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Women’s lacrosse: Heavens (Garnet Valley) helps PSU shock No. 2 Florida

Saturday, 30th March 2013

Categories College, Girl's/Women's  
 

Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/30/13
From Press Release

After facing a three-goal halftime deficit, the No. 9/10 Penn State women’s lacrosse team outscored No. 2 Florida by a 10-2 margin in the second half as the Nittany Lions shocked the Gators, 16-11, at Penn State Lacrosse Field Saturday afternoon.

Penn State's women's team shocked No. 2 Florida, 16-11 (Photo for Phillylacrosse.com)

Penn State’s women’s team shocked No. 2 Florida, 16-11. The players dedicated the game to their three senior captains, Katie Guy, Molly Fernandez and Colleen Shea. (Photo for Phillylacrosse.com)

Penn State (7-3, 2-0 ALC), which erupted for 16 markers against the nation’s second-ranked defense, captured its third straight win and toppled its highest ranked opponent since downing second-ranked North Carolina, 8-7, in overtime April 6, 2007. The Nittany Lions also improved to 2-0 in league play for the first time since 2005, while snapping Florida’s (13-1, 1-1 ALC) 24-game regular-season win streak.

Freshman Ally Heavens (Garnet Valley) had three goals and two draw controls for the Lions while defender Cat Layne (Villa Maria Academy) was a standout in holding down the potent Florida attack.

The Nittany Lions trailed for nearly the entire first half but never let the Gators take more than a three-goal lead. The teams exchanged goals early in the second half to give Florida the 10-7 advantage, but momentum began to shift as Penn State went on a 6-0 run. After junior Mackenzie Cyr (Westminster, Md.) tied the game with 19:14 left after a lengthy possession, freshman Jenna Mosketti (Fallston, Md.) gave the Nittany Lions their first lead with 18:29 remaining in the game.

Florida, which averaged more than 14 goals per game entering Saturday, only tallied once more as Penn State rolled to the upset victory. In a dominating second half at both ends of the field, the Nittany Lions outshot the Gators, 17-3, while dominating draw controls by a 9-2 margin. For the game, Penn State outshot Florida, 29-21, and won 19 draws to the Gators’ 12. Penn State finished 12-for-13 on clears, while Florida went 12-for-14.

Sophomore Tatum Coffey (Toms River, N.J.) recorded a game-high five points (4g, 1a), while six additional Nittany Lions recorded multi-point games. Freshman Emi Smith (Denver, Colo.) made four saves. Mosketti collected a game-high four draw controls, and defender Colleen Shea (Baltimore, Md.) secured a team-high two caused turnovers.

Florida opened the game on a 5-2 run during the first 8:56 of the first half. After the Gators took a 2-0 lead, Coffey scored with 25:06 left on the clock before sophomore Kelly Lechner (Silver Spring, Md.) tied the game with 24:15 remaining. Shannon Gilroy (twice) and Gabi Weigand, who led the Gators with three goals and four points, netted markers for Florida as it took a three-goal lead with 21:04 left.

The Nittany Lions tallied three of the next four markers to make it a two-goal game. After Heavens brought Penn State within a pair, Brittany Dashiell scored for Florida. Cyr and McCormick responded with tallies at 17:17 and 18:34, respectively, to cut the Gator lead to 6-5.

Nora Barry tallied for the Gators with 10:33 remaining in the half before Ashley Bruns extended the Florida advantage to 8-5 with 9:30 left. McCormick then fired her second of the game less than a minute later, but the Gators entered intermission with a 9-6 lead after Bruns second goal in a 4:28 span.

In the second half, Coffey opened the scoring 2:39 into the stanza before Wiegand regained the Gators’ three-goal lead. Penn State then went on a 6-0 run en route to a 13-10 advantage.

Heavens scored with 23:14 left in the game before Mosketti brought the Nittany Lions to within a goal 14 seconds later.

The Nittany Lions captured the ensuing draw and set up their offense during their game-tying possession. During the possession, Penn State fired three unsuccessful shots toward the net but was able to collect the ground ball on each occasion. After the team’s final failed attempt, Cyr fired the game-tying shot to the back of the net with 19:14 left in the game.

Another successful draw control from Mosketti led to the Nittany Lions’ go-ahead goal with 18:29 remaining before Lechner and senior Molly Fernandez (Baltimore, Md.) extended the Penn State advantage to 13-10 at 22:49 and 13:50, respectively.

Florida scored its final marker of the contest with 5:26 remaining, but the Nittany Lions ended the game with three unanswered goals. Coffey scored twice with 4:55 and 1:02 remaining before Heavens tallied her third marker of the game with 0.6 seconds on the clock to account for the 16-11 final.

The Nittany Lions, who defeated Florida for the first time in program history, will return to action Friday, April 5 when they visit No. 4 Northwestern at 8 p.m.

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