No. 8 Women's Lacrosse to Host Ohio State in Home Regular Season Finale
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.; April 18, 2007 - With its postseason hopes hanging in the balance, the No. 8 Penn State women's lacrosse team (8-5, 0-2) will welcome ALC rival Ohio State (7-5, 0-2) to Jeffrey Field for a key intraconference match-up scheduled for 7 p.m. on Fri., April 20. The Nittany Lions are seeking their first league victory in 2007 and will be looking to put themselves in a position to secure a bye in the upcoming inaugural ALC Tournament.
Six seniors, Renee Cipro (Ellicott City, Md.), Lindsay Dutch (Ellicott City, Md.), Jenn Green (Clarksville, Md.), Cammie Jurkowsky (Annapolis, Md.), Karen Long (Ellicott City, Md.), and Joanie Plake (Pittsburgh, Pa.), will play their final home regular season game in a Penn State uniform when they take the field versus the Buckeyes. A special Senior Night ceremony to honor their careers and contributions will precede the contest.
Penn State will be aiming to halt a two-game skid when they meet the Buckeyes on Friday evening. Last weekend, the Nittany Lions fell to No. 1 and two-time defending national champion Northwestern in Evanston, Ill., 19-8. The Ohio State contest will mark just the second time this season that Mother Nature has allowed Penn State to play at Jeffrey Field. The outdoor home has been a safe haven for the Lions in recent years, as they have compiled a 16-6 record at Jeffrey Field since 2001. However, they will look to improve on their first 2007 Jeffrey Field effort, a 16-5 loss to Pennsylania.
Ohio State is coming off a tough 10-9 loss to No. 15 Vanderbilt, suffered on April 15 in Columbus. Earlier in the week, behind a record-tying six goals from junior Jessica Patane, the Buckeyes trounced UC Davis, 17-4. Despite its winning record in 2007, Ohio State is 0-5 versus ranked opponents.
The Buckeyes' attack is fronted by scoring machine, Kristen Slahor. She ranks second on the team in goals (25) and leads OSU in assists (34) and points (59). Slahor's average of 2.83 assists per game ranks her fifth in the nation. Jessica Patane (29 goals) and Kelly Haggerty (25 goals) are also threats in the offensive zone. Goalkeeper Kristen Gilwee headlines the Buckeyes' defense. The sophomore has started all 12 games in net for 12-year head coach Sue Stimmel, compiling a 10.45 goals against average and .527 save percentage.
Penn State possesses an 8-2-0 record in its all-time series with Ohio State and has taken three-straight from the Buckeyes. While Penn State has not played Ohio State since April 21, 2006, a 19-12 Nittany Lion victory in Columbus, the teams are hardly strangers. Ohio State visited Happy Valley just two weekends ago, facing North Carolina and Maryland as part of the 2007 ALC/ACC Challenge.
The Nittany Lions will make their second trip of the season to Baltimore next week, traveling to face No. 14 Johns Hopkins (8-5, 1-1) on Fri., April 27 (5 p.m.) in a critical ALC contest. At stake will likely be a first round bye in the 2007 ALC Tournament. A year ago, Penn State knocked off the Blue Jays, 15-14, at Jeffrey Field in its season finale, helping the Lions cap off the year with a three-game winning streak.