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GRAND LAKE, Colo. – On the heels of its second-consecutive run to the NCAA National Semifinals, the Penn State women’s lacrosse team finished the season ranked third in the final IWLCA Division I Coaches Poll.
The eventual National Champion defeated the Nittany Lions for the second straight season as they fell to Maryland, 20-10, in the NCAA semifinals. PSU finished the season 17-4. The 17 wins tie for the second most in program history for a single-season and are the most wins since the Lions went 19-1 in 1989.
The Nittany Lions received 334 points from the 20-member voting panel, eight points more than Stony Brook who finished the season ranked fourth. The Terrapins were a unanimous No. 1 selection after finishing the season 23-0 and winning their 14th national title while Boston College concluded the season ranked No. 2 after entering the tournament unranked. The Eagles dropped a 16-13 decision to the Terps in the title game and finished the season at 17-7. Defending National Champion North Carolina rounds out the top-5 in fifth after a 17-3 season.
Led by a trio of IWLCA All-Americans and five All-Big Ten selections, Penn State set new single-season records for points (427) and goals (303). Senior Steph Lazo (Stevensville, Md.) led the entire Big Ten in points (89), assists (43), and was named Penn State’s first first-team All-American in 13 years.
Sophomore Madison Carter (Davidsonville, Md.), a second-team All-American, finished second in the Big Ten and tenth in the nation with 70 goals. She became just the fourth different Nittany Lion to register 70 or more goals in a season and first since Tami Worley in 1989. Her 70 goals rank tied for the fourth best single-season in PSU history.
Junior Katie O’Donnell (West Chester, Pa.), also a second-team All-American, added 65 goals on the season to rank third in the Big Ten and 13th in the nation registering the eighth-highest single-season goal total in program history. The rising senior currently ranks ninth on Penn State’s all-time goals list with 142 and has a chance to become just the fourth player in program history to reach the 200-goal milestone next season.
Seniors Abby Smucker (Bel Air, Md.) and Natalie Schmitt (Malvern, Pa.) joined Lazo, Carter and O’Donnell as All-Big Ten selections.