Lacrosse knocks off two ranked opponents

The College’s women’s lacrosse team proved why they are ranked fifth in the nation last week by beating two opponents ranked in the top 20.

The wins gave the team a four-game winning streak and upped its record to 5-2.

In arguably their hardest fought game of the season, the visiting Lions squeaked out a 7-6 win over seventh-ranked Gettysburg College on Sunday in a non-conference matchup. The Bullets fell to 9-3 for the year.

At the end of the first half, the College was trailing 3-2, but in the second half both the offense and defense stepped it up a notch and got the win.

Junior midfielder Bridget Bigley’s second goal of the day put the Lions ahead to stay with 19:21 remaining, part of a four-goal burst that turned a 4-2 deficit into a 6-4 lead.? Junior midfielder Lauren Dougher, who took 10 of the College’s 17 shots, knocked in the rebound of her own shot for the eventual game-winner, helping the Lions improve to 6-0 all-time against the Bullets.

Freshman midfielder Karen Doane, Dougher and Bigley were the leading goal scorers for the Lions with two each and freshman midfielder Toni-Anne Cavallo also added a goal. Senior midfielder Lauren Gossner led the team in assists with two.

The twin duo of Toni-Anne and Christine Cavallo were the defensive stars at the end of the game for the College, with Christine causing a turnover and Toni-Anne picking up a groundball, giving Gettysburg no chance at tying the game.

According to senior defender Heather Rainey and many others, the win against Gettysburg was a big one for the College and is one that will hopefully propel them through the rest of the season.

Junior attacker Ellie Shihadeh scored twice for Gettysburg while senior midfielder Katie Lowe posted a team-high three points with a goal and two assists.? Junior midfielder Jenn Kelly chipped in with a goal and an assist in the loss, the Bullets’ first on their home turf this season.

“The win against Gettysburg was a huge win on our record,” Rainey said. “They are in our region and to be ranked higher than them will be a great pull for us when it comes to postseason play.”

Last Tuesday the Lions took on No. 14 Stevens Institute of Technology at home and took control of the game from the very start. The Lions scored the first 12 goals of the game and never looked back from there in the 19-4 stomping.

Dougher and Doane led the way for the College, racking up six goals apiece. Other goal scorers included Bigley and Gossner, who each chipped in with two goals. Junior defender Meredith Spangler also scored for the Lions.

Senior midfielder Valerie Barnhart led the Ducks with a hat trick, while sophomore midfielder Theresa Dolan notched Stevens’ other goal.

The Lions’ pair of junior goalkeepers, Megan Marquardt and Paige Lucard, were excellent in the net for the Lions, allowing only four goals while stopping two shots.

Marquardt is very impressed with the way the team has played thus far this year and also with the individual performances from each and every player.

“We’ve had a lot of girls step up into some huge shoes that were left by the seniors that we lost to graduation,” Marquardt said. “I’m proud of everyone for playing their hearts out each and every game.”

Next up for the Lions is a huge match against Rowan on Thursday, adding another chapter to one of the biggest rivalries in New Jersey college athletics. Marquardt is aware of the intensity of the rivalry and is ready for anything Rowan has.

“Every (College) versus Rowan game is a big game,” Marquardt said. “We’re always pumped up for that kind of rivalry. They always bring their best game so it pushes us to play our best game too.”

On Saturday and Sunday, the Lions will play two home games against Frostburg State and Washington and Lee University, respectively.