April 29, 2010

Jersey Shocker: Stevens Outscores TCNJ

from press release

– The No. 12 Stevens Institute of Technology women's lacrosse team came back from a five-goal second-half deficit to stun third-ranked The College of New Jersey on Thursday night at the De Baun Athletic Complex. Juniors Pamela Loria and Leah Wasserman tallied four goals apiece as the Ducks outscored the Lions 10-6 in the second half to earn the victory. With the win, Stevens moves to 14-2 on the season, while TCNJ drops to the same mark with the loss.

The first half was hotly contested with TCNJ going into the locker room with an 8-6 lead. The Lions outshot the Ducks 17-15, but Stevens picked up six ground balls compared to five for the Lions. TCNJ took 9-of-15 draws as the Ducks were whistled for 18 first-half fouls.

Sophomore Michelle Buonacuore put the Ducks on the board early with an unassisted tally 2:04 into the game. After TCNJ pulled even, Loria tallied to put the Ducks up 2-1.

The Lions responded with five-straight goals, two each from junior Ali Jaeger (Hampton, Va.) and freshman Jillian Nealon (Whitehouse Station, N.J.), to open up a 7-2 advantage with 7:34 to go in the first.

Buonacuore tallied to stop the bleeding 22 seconds after Jaeger's second goal, and Wasserman made it a 7-4 game when she put home a feed from junior Christine Smith. Jaeger tallied her third goal of the half with 1:31 left but Buonacuore and Wasserman netted goals 28 ticks apart as the Ducks went into the break on a 4-1 run and trailing by just two (8-6).

Wasserman opened the second-half scoring with a free-position goal to cut the Lions' lead to one (8-7), but TCNJ exploded for four-straight goals, three from sophomore Kathleen Notos (Pennsauken, N.J.), to open up a 12-7 lead.

Senior Alyssa Pigott began the Stevens comeback with 15:24 to play in the game and Loria netted a pair less than a minute apart to make it 12-10 Lions with 13:07 to play.

Smith and Loria followed a TCNJ timeout with scores separated by just 1:06 of game time to tie the score at 12, and after senior Robin Deehan (Morris Plains, N.J.) put the Lions back on top with 10:10 remaining, freshman Joey Galligan answered to tie the score at 13. Senior Lisa Seldeen (Wayne, N.J.) gave the Lions a one-goal edge in the see-saw battle, but Pigott put in a gorgeous goal thanks to a perfect pass in front from Loria to knot the game at 14-all.

Just 27 seconds after Pigott's goal, Wasserman tallied the game-winner with 5:34 remaining. TCNJ won the ensuing draw control and had a chance to tie but senior goalkeeper Shannon McFadden, who had a great game in between the pipes, made a stop on a TCNJ free-position attempt, and freshman Spencer Waybright sealed the deal with an insurance goal with 1:34 to go.

The Lions, who had only let up 12 goals in a game twice this year, let up 10 in the second half. The Ducks ended with a 38-28 edge in shots and each team picked up nine ground balls. There were only 11 turnovers in the entire 60 minutes (TCNJ: four, Stevens: seven), but a total of 65 fouls were called (TCNJ: 24, Stevens: 41). The Ducks won 11-of-16 draw controls in the second half and 17-of-31 for the game.

McFadden was splendid in goal, totaling 13 saves and earning the win. Her counterpart, junior Mary Waller (Bel Air, Md.) made nine saves in the loss.

Wasserman and Loria each had four goals and one assist, while Pigott tallied twice, handed out four assists, picked up a ground ball, and controlled a game-high seven draws. Buonacuore scored three goals as Smith and Waybright each had two points on a goal and an assist. Smith also had two draw controls and two ground balls, and junior Kate Cox (Aston, Pa.) collected two ground balls.

TCNJ was led by five points from Seldeen and four from Notos. Deehan and Jaeger had three goals apiece, and Notos picked up a game-high five ground balls.

Stevens will return to action next weekend at Ithaca College in the Empire 8 Women's Lacrosse Championship. The second-seeded Ducks will take on third-seeded Rochester Institute of Technology on May 8 at 2 p.m. The winner will advance to take on top seed Ithaca or fourth-seeded Nazareth College on Sunday, May 9.

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