No. 6 Women’s Lacrosse Late Comeback Falls Short Against No. 7 Virginia
No. 6 women’s lacrosse suffered its first loss of the season in Saturday’s matchup against No. 7 Virginia at Klöckner Stadium. Even after outscoring the Cavaliers in the second half, the Nittany Lions ended up on the losing side of the 16-13 battle.
How It Happened
Virginia started out strong with a draw control and opened up scoring 1:45 into the game. The Nittany Lions responded with a goal from Madison Cyr assisted by Katie O’Donnell. O’Donnell kept up the momentum and snagged a draw control leading to her seventh goal of the season with 26:20 left in the first half. After another Virginia goal tying it up 2-2, Penn State called a time out hoping to turn things around.
Virginia came out of the timeout with an immediate goal, and Penn State started struggling offensively. It had three shots on goal and couldn’t find the net before Virginia scored another on a free position with 15:43 left in the half. Abby Smucker ended Penn State’s silence, lessening the scoring gap to 5-3 with a free position shot 9:54 left in the half. Despite the effort and three more shots on goal, the Nittany Lions couldn’t capitalize and it led to a Cavalier goal at 6:57. Penn State called its second time out after another Virginia goal at 5:18. Jenna Mosketti came out of the break with a draw control and a goal with 5:01 left in the half. Scoring was stagnant until the last 13 seconds when Cyr notched another goal. Virginia closed the half with a free position goal and Penn State headed into halftime trailing Virginia 5-9.
The second half opened with a draw control by Mosketti and two off target shots. After a Virginia yellow card and two fouls, Madison Carter found the back of the goal in a man-up free position shot. The Cavaliers netted their first goal of the second half with 26:35 left in the game, tallying two more unanswered for a 12-6 Virginia lead. Mosketti caused a turnover leading to a free position goal by Ally Heavens, making it 12-7 with 17:17 left to play.
After two consecutive Virginia yellow cards, Heavens collected another goal off a free position and Ally Smucker followed at 12:00. Less than a minute later, Cyr found the back of the net to make it a 12-10 game. Penn State kept up momentum when Carter scored at 9:35. Mosketti snagged another draw control and assisted Cyr’s goal to tie the game 12-12 less than 10 seconds later. At 8:46, Virginia started to pull ahead with another goal and then a free position shot at 6:20. Virginia went on to score two more before O’Donnell scored the last goal of the game at 1:42 on a free position. Despite outscoring the Cavaliers in the second half and a mean comeback effort, the Nittany Lions still fell 16-13.
Player Of The Game
Jenna Mosketti tallied two points and six draw controls. Her explosive offensive strength was key to Penn State’s bountiful shots on goal. She also caused two turnovers and collected three groundballs. Despite the loss, she played a key role in offensive aggression and opportunities.
The Nittany Lions head to Baltimore on Wednesday, March 2 to take on Johns Hopkins. Faceoff is scheduled for 4 p.m against the future Big Ten competitor.