April 3, 2009

Hofstra Upends No. 20 James Madison in Overtime

from press releases

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. - Junior attack Ashley Jones scored her fourth goal of the game with 36 seconds left in the second overtime as the Hofstra Women's Lacrosse team earned its first win over a ranked opponent this season and fifth straight overtime victory with a 13-12 triumph over #20 James Madison on Friday evening at James M. Shuart Stadium.

Ashley Jones finished with four goals and one assist in the game, while Hofstra was led by junior midfielder Corrine Gandolfi with one goal and a career-high five assists.

The win, Hofstra's 15th in its last 18 overtime games, improves the Pride's overall record to 7-3 as they pick up the victory in their Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) opener.  James Madison slips to 4-6 and 0-1 with its fifth straight loss.

James Madison took an early 6-2 advantage in the contest as they broke a two-all tie with four straight goals midway through the opening half.  Mary Kate Lomady scored two goals during the run, including the first one that gave the Dukes a 3-2 advantage with 17:05 left before halftime.

Hofstra would cut the deficit to two goals, 6-4, at intermission as sophomore attack Stephanie Rice scored with 7:35 left before Ashley Jones found the back of the net for the first time in the contest with 5:25 remaining in the half.

After a goal from Jaime Dardine just 1:29 into the second stanza pushed the JMU lead back up to three goals, the Pride would knot the score at seven with a quick 3-0 scoring run.  Hofstra tallied the three goals in a 1:21 span as junior attack Courtney O'Connor, junior midfielder Liz Falco and Gandolfi each scored their first goals of the game to even the score for the first time since it was tied at two midway through the first half.

With James Madison leading 9-8 later in the second half, Hofstra would finally take its first lead of the contest as they had another three-goal scoring run to open an 11-9 advantage after a goal from Ashley Jones with 18:25 to play in regulation.

James Madison would respond, though, and the Dukes used their own 3-0 run to take a narrow 12-11 with just under 13 minutes left in the second stanza.  Ashley Jones would provide the heroics in regulation as well, as she tied the score at 12 off an assist from O'Connor with 11:14 left.  Both defenses would clamp down the remainder of regulation as neither team was able to sneak one past a goalie and the game would go into overtime tied at 12.

The first overtime saw both teams hold for one shot, but neither was able to take advantage and the game went to a sudden victory second overtime.  JMU would win the draw to open the second overtime, but Ashley Jones caused a turnover leading to a Hofstra offensive possession.  Waiting for a solid opportunity at net, Falco would feed Ashley Jones for the game-winner with just 36 ticks left on the second overtime clock.

It marked Hofstra's first double overtime game since an 8-7 loss to Boston College on April 23, 2005.

Hofstra, which held James Madison without a goal for the final 21:22 of the contest, got stellar defensive play out of senior defender Alysse Ruszkowski and sophomore defender Katie Hertsch.  Ruszkowski had four caused turnovers and four ground balls, while Hertsch chipped in with four caused turnovers and three ground balls.  Junior goalie Mary Cuddihy earned her seventh win of the season as she made seven saves in the contest.

Rice tied for game-high honors with four goals for the Pride, and Falco added three goals and one assist to the winning effort.

Lomady posted four goals and one assist for the Dukes, while Jaime Dardine added three goals and one assist.  Monica Zabel had five draw controls for JMU, and Lomady picked up three ground balls.

At halftime of tonight's contest, Hofstra retired the #30 of former goalie Stephanie Clarke.  One of the all-time greats in program history, Clarke made 909 saves in her career from 1994-97.  She ranks second all-time in that category and is the first-ever player in program history to have her jersey number retired.

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