Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/5/22
From Princeton Press Release
If the Princeton women’s lacrosse team has established anything so far in this young season, it’s that it is a team with some toughness.
For the second straight week Princeton used a big fourth quarter to pull out a win. This time, it involved a comeback from three goals back, one that wasn’t completed until Sam Fish made a huge save on an open look in front with five seconds to preserve a thrilling 13-12 win over Cornell on Sherrerd Field.
Princeton trailed 12-9 before scoring the final four goals of the day, one by McKenzie Blake (Haddonfield) with two seconds left in the third quarter and then the only three of the fourth. The game-winner came from Kate Mulham with 7:46 left, and the deciding run saw four different Princeton players score one each.
This win, which left the 10th-ranked Tigers at 3-0, came one week after Princeton snapped a tie game against Temple by also scoring the final four of the day in that 14-10 win.
“That was a big win for us,” said Princeton head coach Chris Sailer (Haverford High). “We kept our composure and were able to execute when we needed to most. It’s always great to win your first Ivy game.”
With the win behind them, the Tigers can now get on their plane tomorrow morning for their spring break trip to California feeling good about how they toughed this one out. Cornell had two big scoring runs of its own, with a 5-0 burst in the second quarter that turned a 6-2 Princeton lead an 7-6 Big Red advantage and then a 4-0 run in the third that turned a 9-8 deficit into a 12-9 Cornell lead.
Three Philly grads played key roles for the Tigers as Ellie Mueller (Radnor) had three goals, an assist, three groundballs and a caused turnover; freshman Blake (Haddonfield) contributed a goal, five groundballs and two caused turnovers; and Maria Pansini (Agnes Irwin) added two groundballs and two caused turnovers.
Blake’s goal at the end of the third was a huge momentum swing in the game, not to mention a thing of beauty. Kari Buonanno started it with caused turnover on the defensive end and then, with the game clock in front of her ticking away, raced the ball down the field. Buonanno passed ahead to Kyla Sears, the “tic” in the Tic-Tac-Toe finish that saw Sears give it to Mueller and Mueller feed cross-crease to Blake.
With the game back to two goals, Grace Taukus then made it 12-11 with her goal 29 seconds into the fourth. Mueller tied it four minutes later on a play where defender Marge Donovan ran it about 70 or so yards down the field, before Mulham scored the deciding goal.
Sears had three goals and an assist of her own, and Taukus and Sophie Whiteway had two goals. Buonanno had one as well. Fish made eight saves, the biggest in the final seconds.
Princeton will play at USC Tuesday night and at San Diego State Saturday during the California swing.