Nittany Lions Bow Out of ALC Championship with Semifinal Loss to Northwestern
May 6, 2011
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - For the fifth straight year, the Penn State women's lacrosse team had its bid for the program's first conference title ended by Northwestern (16-2), as the Nittany Lions fell to the defending league champion, 14-3, in a semifinal contest of the 2011 ALC Championship on Friday in Nashville.
Penn State's struggles to gain possession and crack the stout Northwestern defense defined the game. The Nittany Lions were outdrawn by the Wildcats by a 15-4 margin and were outshot 28-12. Three different Nittany Lions accounted for Penn State's goals, all of which came in the first half.
Penn State (10-8) took a 1-0 lead less than two minutes into the game when senior Jen Steadman (Sykesville, Md.) scored her team-best 37th goal of the year off a pass from fellow senior Mary Dean (Wyncote, Pa.). Northwestern responded by reeling off five unanswered goals, getting one each from five different Wildcats, to gain the lead and control of the game.
The Lions cut the NU advantage to three at 5-2 when junior Aly Adams (Springfield, Pa.) scored at the 14:37 mark, but they couldn't string together a run and the Wildcats stretched their lead to five with back-to-back goals over the next three minutes.
Freshman Mackenzie Cyr (Westminster, Md.) made the game 7-3 with a score with 4:33 remaining in the first half. The goal, Cyr's 12th of the year, however, would prove to be Penn State's last of the game.
Northwestern would go on to score one more before the break and then add six more in the second half while holding Penn State scoreless. The Wildcats' Shannon Smith led all scorers with five goals.
The Nittany Lions will learn their postseason fate on Sunday evening when the Division I Women's Lacrosse Championship bracket is announced exclusively on NCAA.com. The field will be revealed at 7:30 p.m. ET.