May 4, 2013

Limestone Edges Florida Southern in Double OT

from press release

GAFFNEY, S.C. – With 10 seniors playing their final regular season home game at Saints Field, No. 2 Limestone (18-1, 7-0 CC) defended its home turf with a hard fought 9-8, double-overtime victory over No. 10 Florida Southern (11-4) in an NCAA Division II women's lacrosse game on Saturday, May 4. With the victory, the Saints tie the program record with 18 wins in a season.

Senior midfielder Jessie Aguglia (Webster, N.Y.) tied her career-high with three goals and added a pair of groundballs while senior midfielder Chelsea Treat (Penn Yan, N.Y.) had the game-winner, a career-high tying two assists, five groundballs and career-best three caused turnovers.

Junior midfielder Katie Farrell (Brooks, Ga.) took her season goal total to 50 with a pair of scores while sophomore midfielder Sam McCarrick (Oswego, N.Y.) also had two goals. Junior attack Sarah Oor (Uxbridge, Canada) had a goal and an assist and senior attack Sylvia Queener (Penn Yan, N.Y.) added an assist to round out the offense. Defensively, senior midfielder Brittany Howard (Oswego, N.Y.) and junior midfielder Maia Czarnecki (Oswego, N.Y.) each knocked out two caused turnovers on the day.

Senior goalkeeper Rashelle McLellan (East Lyme, Conn.) played all 66 minutes, allowing just eight goals and making four saves to improve to 18-1 on the season. Not only do the 18 wins tie her own program record set in 2011 (18-2), it also gives her the highest single season winning percentage in team history.

FSC got on the board first as Megan Asper connected off a pass from Caitlin Chase to make it 1-0 at 27:45 before McCarrick drilled home a free-position attempt little more than two minutes later to tie it a 1-1. Asper and Chase would then hook up again at the 24:18 mark to retake the lead and hold it until 13:44 was left in the first half.

At that point, Limestone delivered back-to-back goals beginning with an unassisted score from Oor, who then found Aguglia at 9:40 to take a 3-2 lead. The Mocs Danielle LaDuca found the back of the net on her own less than a minute later but Aguglia struck again, this time off a pass from Treat, to regain the lead with 5:02 remaining in the half.

Florida Southern would tie the game less than a minute later on a weird play as a Limestone pass went too near the goal and trickled in for an own goal, tying the game at 4-4. Credited to Chase, that goal would have huge ramifications late in the game. After seeing their lead go away in such a manner, the Saints stepped up their game and drilled home consecutive scores over the final 4:11. Farrell got on the board with an unassisted goal at 3:21 and Aguglia notched the hat trick with a second assist from Treat to head to the break up 6-4.

Chase continued to keep the Mocs in the game in the second half as she connected at 27:36 to cut it to one before Farrell pushed it back to a two-goal margin with 25:56 on the clock. At that point, LaDuca and Lorianne Hoover converted on free position attempts at 24:27 and 18:30 to tie the game at 7-7. It wouldn't stay that way long as Katie Ferree scored off a pass from Mara Mason to put FSC ahead 8-7 just 30 seconds later.

That lead would hold up over the next 11 minutes as it began to look like the first half own-goal would prove very costly. Sylvia Queener and McCarrick then made sure the worst it would do would be to send the game to overtime as McCarrick drilled home the tying goal with 6:14 on the clock. Despite opportunities for both teams down the stretch, neither would net another goal in regulation and the teams would head to OT.

Overtime in women's lacrosse, much like many other aspects, is very different from men's lacrosse. Rather than a four minute sudden death overtime period, the women's game uses two three minute periods. If the teams are still tied after the first full six minutes they'll progress to a second set of three minute periods with sudden death coming in to play if the teams are still tied after that point.

In the first overtime, FSC won the draw control and possessed the ball through the first two minutes before a Hoover turnover gave Limestone a scoring opportunity. And score they did. Following a clear that brought the ball into the offensive end, Treat lasered in on goal, putting home her 61st of the season with just two seconds remaining.

With the overtime rules, the Saints still had to withstand another three minutes following the close of the first overtime. A huge opening draw control by Oor put Limestone in the driver's seat until FSC's Melissa Halstead forced a turnover with 2:09 on the clock. A quick shot at the other end then lost them possession, something they would not regain until there was just 44 seconds left. With 29 seconds on the clock, Ashley Robertson had a nearly open look at the goal and fired high, all but ending the Mocs chances of an upset as Limestone held on for the 9-8 double-overtime victory.

Caitlin Chase led the way for Florida Southern with two goals and two assists while Megan Asper and Danielle LaDuca each notched a pair of scores. Ferree finished with a goal and an assist and Hoover had the only other score. Mason rounded out the offense with a solo assist. Katie Hammerer played all 66 minutes, making 10 saves and allowing all nine goals to fall to 9-3 on the season.

Limestone will now await word on who they will face in the 2013 NCAA Division II Tournament. Selections will be announced tomorrow evening, Sunday, May 5, at 8 p.m. on The Saints are expected to be the top seed in the South and host an NCAA Quarterfinal on Saturday, May 11 at Saints Field.

Possible NCAA Quarterfinal opponents for Limestone are No. 6 Lock Haven (15-2), No. 7 West Chester (15-4) and No. 8 Pfeiffer (14-2) ... The Falcons are idle while WCU defeated LHU 8-7 in the championship game of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Tournament ... the 18 wins this year tie the previous mark of 18-2 set in 2011.

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