Balanced Attack Leads Lions Past Michigan, 20-7
March 23, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Twelve Nittany Lions recorded at least one point as the No. 10/13 Penn State women's lacrosse team captured its fourth straight victory in a 20-7 triumph against Michigan at the Penn State Lacrosse Field Sunday afternoon.
The Nittany Lions improved to 6-3 overall and 2-0 in ALC play for the second straight season, while NCAA newcomer Michigan fell to 0-8 (0-4 ALC). Penn State scored at least 20 goals for the second time in 2014 and held its opponent to single-digit goals for the third straight game and sixth time this season.
Several Nittany Lions reached milestones against the Wolverines. Junior midfielder Kelly Lechner (Silver Spring, Md.) eclipsed the 100-point plateau for her career with a goal and an assist, while classmate Tatum Coffey (Toms River, N.J.) set a career-high in assists (3) en route to matching her personal best in points (6).
Senior Carly Bitzer (Downingtown, Pa.) netted her first career goal in the second half, junior transfer Dani Lazo (Stevensville, Md.) scored her first marker in the Blue and White and senior attacker Shannon Lechner (Silver Spring, Md.) recorded her first career two-goal game. Additionally, Junior Maggie McCormick (Eldersburg, Md.) collected five points (3g, 2a), moving her into 15th place on Penn State's career points list (172).
Penn State, which boasts the nation's 17th-ranked offense, out shot the Wolverines 38-14 and collected 24 ground balls to Michigan's 16. Three Nittany Lions - Mackenzie Cyr (Westminster, Md.), Coffey. Erika Spilker (Severna Park, Md.) - led the team with four ground balls each. Cyr's effort on the ground set a new career high, while sophomore midfielder Jenna Mosketti (Fallston, Md.), who added two points (1g, 1a), led Penn State with seven of the team's 18 draw controls.
Senior defender Lauren Purvis (Maple Glen, Pa.) secured a game-high three caused turnovers, while sophomore Emi Smith (Denver, Colo.) earned the victory with three first-half saves. Freshman Cat Rainone (Newtown Square, Pa.) made two saves in the second stanza.
Michigan held pace with the Nittany Lions during the first eight minutes of the contest as both teams found success en route to a 3-2 Penn State lead. After junior Kristin Brent (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) scored a free-position goal with 21:25 left in the first, the Nittany Lions added 10 first-period markers as they entered halftime with a 14-5 lead.
Sophomore midfield Madison Cyr (Westminster, Md.) recorded all four of her points (3g, 1a) in the opening 30, while freshman Abby Smucker (Bel Air, Md.) represented one of 10 Nittany Lion goal-scorers in the half.
In the second stanza, Penn State out scored the Wolverines by a 6-2 margin to account for the 13-goal victory. After Coffey extended the Nittany Lion lead to 15-5, junior Jess Loizeaux (Mullica Hill, N.J.) netted two of her season-best five points (3g, 2a). Michigan responded with a pair of strikes before Coffey, the elder Lechner and Bitzer rounded out the scoring.
Penn State will return to action Wednesday, March 26 when it welcomes Drexel to the Penn State Lacrosse Field. Opening draw is set at 4 p.m.