April 27, 2013

Fitzgerald and No. 4 Wildcats Wallop No. 16 Penn

from press release

EVANSTON, Ill. -- Fourth-ranked Northwestern capped a 15-2 regular season with a 15-8 victory over Ivy League-champion Pennsylvania Saturday in front of a season-high crowd of 1,672 fans at Lakeside Field in Evanston. The 'Cats, who before the game honored seven seniors playing their final regular-season home game, received goals from five of those seniors, including four by Erin Fitzgerald.

 Junior Kelly Rich added three goals to Northwestern's attack while Beatrice Conley and Alyssa Leonardeach finished with three points, highlighting a group of nine Wildcat goal-scorers. The 15 goals for NU were the most by the Wildcats since netting 16 against Harvard on March 16.

After taking a 6-3 lead into halftime, Northwestern led by as many as six goals after opening the second half on a 4-1 run. But Penn, which entered the game having won nine of its last 10 outings, hung tough and eventually pulled to within three with 13:26 to play.NU clamped down from that point on, however, receiving several key saves from sophomore goalkeeper Bridget Bianco and scoring the game's last four goals to walk away with its seventh straight win in the all-time series with the Quakers.

With the regular season in the rearview mirror, Northwestern turns its attention to its first postseason test, the 2013 American Lacrosse Conference Tournament hosted by Johns Hopkins in Baltimore. As the tournament's No. 2 seed, the Wildcats earned a first-round bye and will face the winner of a Penn State-Vanderbilt opening-round matchup at 5:30 p.m. CT on Friday (May 3). Visit NUsports.com in the coming days for more information on the tournament and the ensuing NCAA Tournament bracket announcement on May 5.

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