WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Saint Joseph's women's lacrosse team dropped a hard-fought match-up at Georgetown, 18-15, in the Hawks' 2018 season opener at Cooper Field on Saturday afternoon. The Hoyas used uncontested, five-goal runs in each half to stay marginally in front throughout the game.
Junior midfielder Rebecca Lane scored twice and dished out a team-high three assists for a team-high five points and junior attacker Francesca Donato tallied a hat trick (3g) while in their collegiate debuts, freshman attackers Stephanie Kelly (2g, 1a) and Sam McGee (1g, 2a) went for three points apiece.
"We had a hard-fought game against a competitive Georgetown team today," said head coach Alex Kahoe. "Unfortunately, we fell short. Our team had great moments throughout the game, but as a whole, we needed to compete for the full 60 minutes. We are looking forward to getting back to practice as we prepare for our home opener next Saturday."
Georgetown (1-0) scored five of the first six goals of the game to own a 6-1 edge midway through the first (15:36).
However, Saint Joseph's (0-1) clawed back with a run of its own, scoring five of the next six goals to pull to within one, 7-6, with 2:31 to play in the first half; McGee factored into the first two scoring plays of that run, scoring her first collegiate goal (11:34) and assisting on sophomore midfielder Julia Pash's first goal of the season (8:06). Following a Georgetown score, Kelly put away her first of the day (3:16) before Lane recorded back-to-back assists to Kelly (2:57) and Donato (2:31) to close out the run.
The Hoyas would score on a free position shot with 1:15 remaining in the first half to own a two-goal edge, 8-6, heading into the halftime break.
The Hawks got back to within one score as freshman midfielder Taylor Newman-Farr scored her first collegiate goal just 22 seconds into the second half, assisted by junior midfielder Sinead Brierley, but Georgetown would go on to tear off five uncontested goals to extend its lead to six, 13-7, by the 21:41 mark of the second half.
The Hawks again fought back, scoring seven of the next nine goals of the game to once more close the deficit to one goal, 15-14, with 11:13 to play. Donato (21:10) kicked off the run with her second goal of the game before Lane (20:17) and junior midielder Hayley Sabol (18:11) put away back-to-back free position goals.
The Hoyas responded (17:42), but the Hawks put away another trio of uncontested goals, from Newman-Farr (17:29), Donato (15:10), and senior midfielder Kate Payne, who put away her first collegiate goal at the 14:42 mark.
Following the Hoyas' second goal of that SJU run, sophomore midfielder Bridget Cerciello scored to inch the Hawks back to within one, 15-14, at the 11:13 mark.
Georgetown's leading scorer Taylor Gebhardt scored her game-leading fourth goal of the day with 10:19 to play, but Lane responded with an unassisted score with 9:23 remaining to again bring the Hawks to within one, 16-15.
Pash and Donato both rocketed shots on goal with just over nine minutes remaining, but Georgetown goalkeeper Micheline Dinardo came up with the pair of saves, along with possession, en route to Georgetown's 17th goal (6:10). The Hoyas would then win the following draw control and, after an SJU foul inside the eight meter, put away their 18th and final goal of the game (5:41) to hang on for the win.
For the game, Georgetown owned a slight 32-30 edge in shots, while Saint Joseph's won more ground balls in each half, leading to an overall 16-11 advantage; Pash led the Hawks with three ground balls, while senior defender Juliana Strazulo went for two ground balls and a team-best two caused turnovers. The Hoyas earned 19 draw controls, while Payne (5) and Pash (4) combined for eight of SJU's 16.
Graduate student goalkeeper Liz O'Sullivan (0-1) made 10 saves, six in the first half and four in the second, in the full 60:00.
Saint Joseph's returns to action next Saturday, February 17 when the Hawks host Central Connecticut State in the 2018 home opener. Opening draw is set for 3:00 p.m. on Sweeney Field. The game will be streamed ($) via the Atlantic 10 Network.
GAME NOTES: Freshman attacker Stephanie Kelly (2g, 1a), freshman attacker Sam McGee (1g, 2a), and freshman midfielder Taylor Newman-Farr (2g) made their collegiate debuts, with Kelly getting the starting nod on the attack... With three assists in Saturday's game, junior midfielder Rebecca Lane moves into a tie for fourth all-time, with Meghan McDevitt '13 and former teammate Nora McCallion '17, in career assists (56)... With five points in Saturday's game, Lane remains 10th all-time in career points (129).