Women’s Lacrosse Wins Wild Two-Venue Contest

Story posted April 10, 2013 in Sports, CommRadio by Troy Weller

Sometimes a game can be a tale of two halves. Rarely are they a tale of two halves and two venues.

However, that’s exactly what happened in University Park on Wednesday night. Using a first half outburst of eight goals at the Penn State Lacrosse Field, the Nittany Lions (8-4, 2-1 ALC) knocked off the Lehigh Mountain Hawks (3-11, 1-4 Patriot League), 16-3. Due to a violent thunderstorm, part of the game was moved inside to Holuba Hall for the Nittany Lions to finish out their victory.

It was a good rebound win for Penn State after scoring only three goals in their loss last Friday against Northwestern.

The Nittany Lions got off to a hot start, scoring three goals in the first three and a half minutes. Mackenzie Cyr notched Penn State’s first goal just over a minute in, followed by Kelly Lechner just over two minutes in. Penn State continued to pepper Lehigh goalkeeper Alexandra Fitzpatrick, as Ally Heavens made it 3-0 at the 3:30 mark.

Lehigh would settle in defensively after the Heavens goal and start to challenge the Nittany Lions a bit more in their attacking zone. It would take four minutes after the third goal for Penn State to record their fourth, as Molly Fernandez found the back of the net after weaving her way through the defense.

Penn State would get goals from Cyr, Tatum Coffey and two from Maggie McCormick before the weather became a factor.

With 49.2 seconds left, the game was delayed because of a thunderstorm. Instead of waiting it out, the game was moved across the street and inside to Holuba Hall, with the travel time acting as the halftime period. When play was resumed, the teams finished the remaining 49.2 seconds before switching sides and starting the second half.

So, did the change of venues have any affect on Penn State?

“No, not really,” Head Coach Missy Doherty said after the game. “I think we wanted to come in with a really good plan today and I think [the team] did a really good job of that.”

The scoring would continue in the second half as well for Penn State, with Madison Cyr leading the way with two goals. Lechner and Heavens would each get their second of the game and Avery Curley, Jenna Mosketti, Kristin Brent and Erika Spilker would join in on the action as well.

Afterwards, Mackenzie Cyr agreed with her coach that the change of venues wasn’t a factor. The team had known prior to the game that the weather could be bad, and they knew that a change of scenery had a chance of happening.

“We knew it was a possibility, so it didn’t affect us,” she said.

Penn State goalkeeper Emi Smith was big in net for the Nittany Lions. She came up with a plethora of big saves for Penn State in the first half, only being beat once off a stoppage by Lehigh’s Kendall Garden. Smith would eventually get a breather, as Ayla Halus replaced her for the second half. Even then, Lehigh could muster only a total of three goals.

Though she had some early scoring support from her teammates, Smith said that relaxation is never an option regardless of how big of a lead her team has.

“I’m always putting myself under pressure because I don’t want to relax,” she said. “When I get relaxed, I tend to let more goals in.”

Penn State will be back in action this Sunday when they host Ohio State. It will be their fourth conference game of the year, and the Nittany Lions will look to move to 3-1 in ALC play.

 

Troy Weller is a senior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, e-mail tnw5044@psu.edu.