March 7, 2012

Down 7-0, Jacksonville Fights Back vs. Temple

from press release

About 17 minutes into Wednesday's game against Temple, the Jacksonville University women's lacrosse team was getting a taste of its own medicine.

Apparently, the Dolphins didn't like the taste.

JU, normally the team dishing out the licks, found itself down 7-0 before getting untracked and coming back to beat the Owls 19-16 at D. B. Milne Field and running its home win streak to 10.

Sophomores Nikki Erdely and Ali Hoffman scored four goals each as nine different Dolphins (4-1) contributed to hand Temple its first loss of the season.

"This is a huge win for us, coach Mindy McCord said. "That's really the first time we've been down by that great of a margin and pulled ourselves back into the game.''

There was a lot of pulling to do as Temple's Stephanie Markunas scored three of her four goals in early succession as the Owls' offense peppered the JU defense and goalie Karli Tobin.

JU's Kaitlin Stewart put her team on the board with 6:55 to play in the first half which started a run of six goals in the final minutes to pull JU to within 8-6 at the break.

The Dolphins' Jess Worcester tied the game at 11 and JU went ahead for good moments later when Nicole Albino scored on a free position shot for a 12-11 lead. Both Worcester and Albino had two goals for the game as did the team's leading scorer, Jen

Cosgrove and Amanda Hurley. Ellyn Spangenberg and Holly Ventimiglia each scored once.

"It's about time I came out of my shell,'' said Erdely, who had two goals entering the game. "We played the best attack we have all season.''

Tobin her turnaround in goal came after she focused herself.

"I tipped a couple of shots and that made me determined to make saves,'' she said. "As soon as we started scoring I knew they (her teammates) had my back and it wasn't going to all come down on my shoulders and that made me play looser.''

McCord was happy with Tobin's performance.

"That's one of the things I was most proud of in the game, her resilience and emotional control,'' McCord said. "It was great to see her bring that defense back into the game and be an emotional leader out there. That was a big thing for us.''

She acknowledged the win was important on several levels.

"Our team showed me that now we have older players who have gained experience and maturity,'' she said. "And, we had some younger players who had more control on the field. Part of it's that the other part of it is we know the game is long and there is a lot of transition and that in time we can find opportunity to find the momentum. Our team just kept being competitive. They stayed in the game mentally and they knew they would get their opportunities and figured it out. This is the smartest game I've seen them put together. This was a game to learn from and be proud of our performance.''

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