No. 6 Lions Fall to No. 13/18 Princeton, 14-9
April 27, 2013
PRINCETON, N.J. - Sophomores Kelly Lechner (Silver Spring, Md.) and Maggie McCormick (Eldersburg, Md.) led Penn State with three points each, but the No. 6 Penn State women's lacrosse team fell to No. 13/18 Princeton, 14-9, in its regular-season finale at the Class of 1952 Stadium Saturday afternoon. The Nittany Lions fell to 11-5 overall, while Princeton improved to 10-5.
Penn State utilized a 4-0 second-half run to narrow the Tiger lead to 10-8, but Princeton finished the contest with a 4-1 outburst. Lechner tallied all three of her goals during the Nittany Lions' 4-0 run, while McCormick, who set a career high with her 32nd assist of the season, tallied a goal and two assists.
Princeton's Sam Ellis (4g, 2a) and Erin McMunn (3g, 3a) led the Tigers with six points each, while Caroline Franke turned aside 13 shots. The Nittany Lions outshot Princeton by a 29-21 margin and secured more ground balls (15-14) and draw controls (13-12). Freshman goalkeeper Emi Smith (Denver, Colo.) started the game and turned aside three shots, while redshirt senior Ayla Halus (Hershey, Pa.) made one save in relief.
The Tigers, who opened the game on a 4-0 run, dominated the first half as they took a 6-2 lead into halftime. Ellis struck twice in a 1:05 span within the first five minutes of the game before Erin Slifer scored goals at 10:29 and 13:08 to give the Tigers a four-goal lead.
With 16:25 left in the opening frame, freshman midfielder Ally Heavens (Garnet Valley, Pa.) notched her 16th marker of the season to make it a three-goal game. After a restart, Heavens raced down the field before scoring high.
The Tigers responded with a pair of tallies as they took a 6-1 advantage. McMunn scored with 14:54 left in the half before Ellis added her third of the game 3:43 later.
McCormick closed the gap to 6-2 with 3:45 remaining. The Eldersburg, Md., native came around the cage before sending a high shot past Franke, who made seven first-half saves.
In the second half, sophomore midfielder Tatum Coffey (Toms River, N.J.) fired a low shot past Franke just 48 seconds into the frame, but the Tigers responded with a 4-1 run to take a 10-4 lead. Slifer added her third of the game with 26:11 left in the half before Jaci Grassaway extended the Tiger lead to 8-3 with 22:39 left.
At 7:54 of the frame, freshman Madison Cyr (Westminster, Md.) took a pass from McCormick in front of the net and sent a quick shot past the netminder. Sarah Lloyd and Anya Gersoff answered for the Tigers with 21:06 and 15:49 remaining, respectively, to give Princeton a six-goal advantage.
With 12:54 remaining, Lechner began a 4-0 run as the Nittany Lions made it a two-goal affair. The Silver Spring, Md., native struck twice in a 28-second span before Coffey added her second of the game on a free-position shot. At 23:10 of the stanza, Lechner completed her fifth hat trick of the season as the Nittany Lions clawed back to within a pair.
Princeton answered the Nittany Lions' four-goal run with four consecutive markers in a 4:03 span. Lloyd struck first with 6:24 left in the game before McMunn and Ellis netted markers with 4:04 and 3:03 remaining, respectively. McMunn netted her third of the game with 2:21 remaining to make it 14-8 before sophomore Haley Ford (White Hall, Md.) closed out the scoring to account for the 14-9 final.
The Nittany Lions will return to action Thursday, May 2 when they face Vanderbilt in the ALC quarterfinals. Opening draw at Johns Hopkins' Homewood Field is set at 6:30 p.m.