March 14, 2009

No. 4 Gettysburg Swarms Muhlenberg

from staff reports

GETTYSBURG, Pa. - A swarming transition defense keyed a nine-goal run in the second half and helped the fourth-ranked Gettysburg College women's lacrosse team get by upstart Muhlenberg College 15-8 in the teams' first Centennial Conference contest of the season. Junior Nina Emala (Baltimore, Md./Bryn Mawr) led the Bullets' attack with game highs of four goals and three assists.

Gettysburg (4-0, 1-0 CC) improved its all-time record against Muhlenberg (2-1, 0-1 CC) to 22-0, but the Mules, coming off a pair of dominating victories to open the year, put up a stiff challenge in the early going, netting three of the game's first four goals in the opening 10 minutes. Emala sparked a 5-0 run by the Bullets with a pair of goals and an assist to lift the hosts to a 6-3 lead with nine minutes left in the half.

The Mules closed the first half with a free position goal by Danielle Scarrone and netted the first goal of the second half to close the gap to 6-5. Muhlenberg goalkeeper Allisyn Vachon kept Gettysburg out of the scoring column for almost 12 minutes over the first and second periods with several point-blank saves in front of the goal.

Gettysburg kicked its game into high gear in the final period by taking over the middle of the field, starting with the draw. The Bullets won 10 of 14 draw controls in the second half and forced Muhlenberg into a series of transition turnovers, leading to a 9-0 run over a 22-minute span and putting the game out of reach. Juniors Jessica Crane (Sudbury, Mass./Lincoln-Sudbury) and Hollis Stahl (Highstown, N.J./Peddie School) led the offensive charge in the final period with three and two goals, respectively.

The Bullets swarming defense forced Muhlenberg into 26 turnovers in the game and held the Mules to just 50 percent (11-of-22) on their clear attempts. Sophomore Becky Lutz (Madison, Conn./Daniel Hand) posted a career-high five caused turnovers and scooped up three ground balls, while junior Lexie Hearn (Old Greenwich, Conn./Old Greenwich) posted four caused turnovers and tied a personal mark with six ground balls.

Junior Anna Scanlan (Lutherville, Md./Roland Park Country School) and senior Sara Tolner (Pasadena, Md./Severn School) each caused a pair of turnovers, the latter adding four ground balls. Junior Nicole Ditillo (Baldwin, Md./Fallston) led Gettysburg with five draw controls.

Offensively, Emala recorded at least six points for the fourth-straight game and added three ground balls and a pair of draw controls. Stahl and Crane each added three goals and four draw controls for the Bullets, with Hearn tossing in one goal and dishing out a pair of assists.

Vachon put in a busy afternoon for Muhlenberg with a season-high 16 saves and three ground balls. McGovern led the Mules offense with three goals and one assist and caused a pair of turnovers. Danielle Scarrone tossed in two goals and Ashley Foltiny added five ground balls and one caused turnover.

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