April 28, 2009

Blemish: TCNJ Halts Stevens' Perfection

from press releases

EWING, N.J. - The No. 12 Stevens Institute of Technology women's lacrosse team fell 20-11 to No. 4 The College of New Jersey on Tuesday night in Ewing, N.J., ending the Ducks' chance at an undefeated regular season. Stevens (15-1) started well, taking a 2-0 lead less than five minutes into the contest, but the Lions came back and answered with six unanswered tallies to take a 6-2 advantage as the Ducks could not get closer than three the rest of the way. Stevens was led by four goals and assist from sophomore attack Leah Wasserman.

Wasserman, who now has 50 goals this season, put the Ducks on top with an unassisted tally 1:55 into the action. The sophomore moved to her right and buried a shot in the lower left corner of the net. After a nice save from senior goalkeeper Grace Sack, Stevens went up 2-0 on the ensuing possession with another score from Wasserman.

TCNJ got on the board at 21:45 thanks to a goal from junior Lisa Seldeen (Wayne, N.J.), and then tied the score when Seldeen set up junior Robin Deehan (Princeton Junction, N.J.) with 17:12 left in the half. The Lions took their first lead 59 seconds later when sophomore Allison Jaeger (Hampton, N.J.) recorded her 100th career goal, and took a 4-2 lead when senior Katie Reuther (Toms River, N.J.) converted a free-position attempt. Reuther netted an unassisted goal to make it a 5-0 as the Ducks struggled to gain any type of possession after the first five minutes of the first half.

Freshman Jackie Riley (North Caldwell, N.J.) scored unassisted with 10:25 to go in the half, and sophomore Pamela Loria was able to put away a nice pass from sophomore Karen Federico to stop the bleeding for Stevens.

The Lions quickly answered back as Seldeen scored for the third time in the half, and less than a minute later, Reuther tallied again to make it an 8-3 game with 6:29 to play in the first. Seldeen notched her forth to make it 9-3 Lions about 4:30 later, but junior Alyssa Pigott passed to Loria on a free-position attempt to make it a five-goal game.

The Lions came out strong in the second and quickly added to their lead with scores from freshman Kathleen Notos (Pennsauken, N.J.) and Reuther. Pigott scored her first of the game with 25:37 remaining to get the Ducks back within six but less than a minute later the Lions tallied again, this time it was senior Rachel Gordon (Cherry Hill, N.J.).

Pigott converted a free-position attempt for the Ducks' sixth goal and Wasserman set up Loria with a perfect pass to make it a five-goal game (12-7) with 23:39 left, but 2:16 later, TCNJ ended the Stevens spurt when Notos recorded her second and third goals of the half to push the lead back to seven. After another Lion tally, sophomore Christine Smith put in an unassisted goal with 17:55 to play to make it 15-8.

That would be the closest the Ducks would get as the Lions went on to score five of the game's last eight goals for the final margin. TCNJ (14-2) ended the contest with a 41-22 advantage in shots and won 20-of-33 draw controls. The Lions picked up 17 ground balls compared to 11 for Stevens.

Notos led TCNJ with five goals, all in the second half as Jaeger and Reuther had four apiece. Stevens was led by six points from Wasserman. Pigott finished with three goals and two assists to go along with two draw controls. Loria had three goals and four draw controls, and Smith totaled two points (one goal, one assist), two ground balls and three draw controls. Sack made 12 saves in net and picked up two ground balls as the loss snaps an 18-game winning streak dating back to last season.

Stevens will return to action on Saturday when they host St. John Fisher College in an Empire 8 Women's Lacrosse Championship semifinal at the De Baun Athletic Complex at 12 p.m.

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