March 13, 2011

Kirk Helps Cornell Get Even in Ivy

from press release

NEW YORK, N.Y. -- Junior midfielder Katie Kirk scored three times and senior Libby Johnson found the back of the net twice as the Cornell women's lacrosse team evened its Ivy League record at 1-1 with a 9-7 triumph at Columbia on Sunday afternoon at Robert Kraft Field. Cornell remained unbeaten against the Lions all-time in improving to 2-3 (1-1 Ivy). Columbia slipped to 1-3 (0-2 (Ivy).

Kelly Lang and Jessi Steinberg each had a goal and combined for nine draw control wins for the Big Red, while Caroline Salisbury notched a goal and an assist. Cacki Helmer caused a pair of turnovers to spearhead a defensive charge that saw the visitors allow a season-low goals total. The goalkeeper tandem of Kyla Dambach (four goals, one save) and Courtney Gallagher (three goals, one save) split time in goal.

Taylor Gattinelli scored three goals for the Lions, while Kacie Johnson notched two goals and an assist. In goal, Karlee Blank kept the home team in the game with six saves. On the defensive end, Caroline Seery had game highs of four ground balls and three caused turnovers.

Cornell scored the first goal just 35 seconds in and never trailed, though the Lions tied the game two times (1-1, 2-2). The Big Red controlled the game throughout, out-shooting the Lions by a sizable 34-14 margin, but could never pull away despite having a dominant 15-3 edge in draw controls and a 13-12 advantage in ground balls.

The Big Red led by as many as four goals (6-2) after a 4-0 run, including three straight goals in a span of 1:22. but the Lions answered. Three straight goals, including two in the final 49 seconds of the half, brought the home team back to within 6-5. The squads traded scores to make it 7-6, but Kirk and Johnson extended the lead to 9-6. The Lions netted a late one with 1:14 left to cut it to two, but the Big Red won the ensuing draw and ran out the clock for the win.

Cornell returns to action when it meets Notre Dame on Sunday, March 20 at 12 p.m. in Lutherville, Md. at St. Paul's School.

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