WLAX: No. 8 Penn State Takes Down No. 7 Princeton With Explosive First Half
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa – The No. 8 Penn State Nittany Lions women’s lacrosse team (7-1) defeated the No. 7 Princeton Tigers (4-2) 14-10 on Wednesday at the Penn State lacrosse field.
Penn State would start the game with four goals in the first three minutes, about as fast of a start as you can have in a lacrosse game. The Lions would capitalize on four of their first five possessions. The one they didn’t score on resulted in a shot off of the post by Steph Lazo.
The first four goals were from Ally Heavens, Katie O’Donnell, Madison Cyr and Jenna Mosketti. Mosketti’s goal would be the first of three straight by her, which would pace the Nittany Lions out to a 6-0 lead.
The teams would then trade two goals apiece and head into halftime at 8-2. Madison Cyr would score the Lions final two goals to complete her hat-trick. It was a dominant first half that caused Princeton to take two timeouts in the first five minutes, and would be a big obstacle that the Tigers could never quite get over.
Princeton would pull the game back to within four early in the second half, before senior midfielder Madison Cyr would take over. Cyr would score another three goals in the second half to bring her tally to six on the game. She always seemed to appear in the right place at the right time.
There was a stretch of time where Penn State kept possession in the offensive zone for over four minutes. This was a key point where the Nittany Lions were able to bleed away time on the clock as Princeton needed five goals at that point.
The Tigers would make things interesting down the stretch as they would score three straight times to bring the deficit to four, but it was too little too late as Penn State would take the game 14-10
A key player for the Nittany Lions was Steph Lazo who had seven assists. When asked about the play of the junior midfielder, head coach Missy Doherty was pleased with her performance.
“She did a good job of looking like a threat, going hard, keeping her head up to the middle, and hitting the easy option both in transition and on offense,” Doherty said.
The big threat posed by Princeton was through their leading scorer Olivia Hompe, who Penn State was able to neutralize for most of the game, limiting her to only one goal coming late in the second half off of an eight-meter restart. Coach Doherty was asked postgame about the adjustments they made to keep her quiet.
“We moved Abby (Smucker) back to Defense, she had been playing midfield for us, we just felt like we needed a little extra defensive pump for us,” Doherty remarked.
The Nittany Lions next travel to Stanford for an out of conference matchup on Sunday.
Zachary Green is a sophomore majoring in broadcast journalism. He can be reached by email at email@example.com or on twitter @zgreen05