April 22, 2011

Towson Tops ODU to Clinch CAA Tourney Spot

from press release

TOWSON, Md. - Sophomore midfielder Ashley Waldron matched her career high by scoring four goals and added an assist to lead the Tigers (9-6, 5-1) to their fourth straight win, an 11-5 Colonial Athletic Association victory over Old Dominion University (4-9, 3-2) at Johnny Unitas® Stadium on Friday evening.

With the win, the Tigers remain in a tie with James Madison for first place in the CAA standings with a 5-1 record and secured their fourth consecutive CAA Tournament berth. The Dukes edged Drexel by a 9-8 margin on Friday afternoon.

"I think our team played very well tonight and earning a spot in the CAA Tournament is just another step forward for our team," Towson Coach Sonia LaMonica said. "We have grown into our own on the offensive end and we were really smart with our shots tonight.

"Ashley is just a great athlete and has really stepped up," Coach LaMonica added. "When she gets on a run like she did tonight, it's fun to watch. She gets that fire in her and goes hard to the cage and finds the back of the net."

After the Lady Monarchs took a 1-0 lead just under four minutes into the first half on a goal by junior midfielder Sarah Wright, the Tigers scored five straight goals, including a pair from junior midfielder Jackie LaMonica, to take a commanding 5-1 lead with 35 seconds left in the first half.

The teams traded goals in the final 22 seconds to give the Tigers a 6-2 advantage at the intermission.

Waldron scored her third goal of the game just under two minutes into the second half to extend the Towson cushion to 7-2, but the Lady Monarchs used a pair of goals by junior midfielder Lisa Bernardini to trim the deficit to 7-4 with 27:42 remaining.

However, the Tigers answered by scoring four straight goals, including a pair from freshman attacker Rhiannon Coogle, to increase their lead to 11-4 with 12:25 left.

With 7:58 remaining, freshman midfielder Emily Austerberry scored to end a nearly 20-minute scoring drought for the Lady Monarchs, but the Tiger defense held Old Dominion to just two shots in the final seven minutes to secure the victory.

While Waldron led the Tigers with her five-point effort, LaMonica contributed two goals with two assists for the Tigers, who scored 11 goals on just 20 shots. Junior attacker Sarah Appelt added a goal with two assists.

Bernardini led Old Dominion with two goals with Wright added a goal and an assist in a losing effort.

The Lady Monarchs outshot Towson by a 21-20 margin and had a 16-8 advantage in ground balls.

The Tigers will finish the regular season on Sunday afternoon when they take on William & Mary at Unitas Stadium at 1 p.m. A win over the Tribe would give the Tigers their first CAA regular season title and the right to host the CAA Tournament on May 5 and 7. Meanwhile, the Lady Monarchs will travel to Delaware on Sunday for a 1 p.m. match-up against the Blue Hens.

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