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Penn State Women’s Lacrosse Dominates Pitt 15-7

Penn State women’s lacrosse (6-6, 0-3 Big Ten) handily defeated Pitt (7-8, 1-6 ACC) 15-7 on Thursday afternoon. The Nittany Lions held a comfortable scoreline for most of the game, as hat tricks from Kristin O’Neill, Taylor Regan, and Meghan Murray made life easy for Penn State.

How It Happened

It took some time for either time to find the net, but after two possessions and a missed Pitt free-position shot, Penn State drew first blood. O’Neill found the back of the net after a short Nittany Lion possession to put Penn State up 1-0. Just as the first goal had been announced over Panzer Stadium’s PA system, O’Neill struck again, and Penn State had a two-goal lead after three and a half minutes.

It didn’t take too long for Pitt to recover, as Emily Coughlin beat goalie Ashley Bowan to make it a one-goal game. After less than a minute, the game was even, as Sydney Naylor tucked her shot into the bottom right corner.

Pitt took its first lead after seven minutes of play, as Julia Foster ran through the Nittany Lion defense unchallenged, and a well-placed shot made the score 3-2 for the Panthers, as Missy Dougherty called a timeout for Penn State.

Penn State brought the game back with a shot from Mary Muldoon that grazed the top post before hitting the far right netting. Just after, Gretchen Gilmore restored the Nittany Lions’ lead with two and a half minutes remaining in the first quarter. Despite late pushes by both sides, the first quarter closed with the score at 4-3 in favor of the blue and white.

Penn State didn’t take its time in the second quarter, as Sydney Wolfington scored with under a minute gone. After her assist to Wolfington, O’Neill scored her third goal of the game just over one minute later, forcing the Panthers to call a timeout down 6-3.

Pitt’s timeout didn’t stop the bleeding, as Regan gave Penn State a four-goal lead soon after. After Murray broke through Pitt’s defense on a free-position shot, Penn State was up 8-3 with just over nine minutes remaining in the first half.

Regan scored her second goal of the game two minutes later, as Penn State kept rolling. The goals kept coming, as Regan’s was Penn State’s seventh unanswered goal.

Pitt finally answered with its first free position goal from Paige Petty. As the clock ticked closer to zero in the first half, Pitt made a strong effort to get back into the game, with better defensive stands and more dangerous offensive possessions.

Penn State wasn’t quite done, as Murray scored her second goal with a free-position shot with a minute and a half remaining in the first half. Kayla Abernathy followed with a goal of her own, as Penn State held a seven-goal lead. It wouldn’t last, as Pitt’s Maureen McNierney brought the game back slightly before the half. After McNeirney’s goal, both teams went into the locker room with the score 11-5 in Penn State’s favor.

Both teams started strong defensively, but after five minutes of play in the second half, Murray scored her third goal of the game for the Nittany Lions. Gilmore followed up two minutes later, as Penn State kept its dominance with an eight-goal lead.

After a long offensive possession and numerous free-position shots, Brooke Hoss scored her first goal of the game as Penn State’s victory looked more and more assured with a 14-5 lead.

With a win already in its pocket, Penn State seemed to want and get fancy in the fourth quarter, as O’Neill tried a backhand shot near the net. Hoss attempted to bounce the ball into the net from about ten yards out, and Regan attempted a shot from behind her back.

After almost nine minutes of scoreless action in the fourth quarter, Pitt scored the first goal of the frame, as Kate Elam found the back of Penn State’s net. After another three minutes, Dylana Williams scored off of a free-position attempt, making the score 14-7.

Regan wrapped up the scoring with a free-position goal with just over 90 seconds to play in the game. With neither team showing much interest in fighting for honor, the game concluded with a score of 15-7.

Takeaways

  • Penn State looked strong defending free-position shots. Despite giving up ten opportunities, Penn State saved eight of those attempts. That being said, Pitt didn’t seem too interested in taking advantage of its chances, playing the ball out on many occasions.
  • Coming off of a game against Maryland where it allowed 33 shots, Penn State seemed determined to flip the script. The team allowed just 18 shots from Pitt while taking 41 of its own.
  • Any win is good, and any win that breaks a four-game losing streak is great. Penn State will appreciate the victory a little extra as it heads into its last three games, all against Big Ten opponents.

What’s Next

Penn State will stay home this weekend for a matchup with the Michigan Wolverines. The game will begin at 1 p.m. at Panzer Stadium, and the game can be streamed on Big Ten Plus.

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About the Author

Joe Lister

Joe is a freshman journalism major at Penn State. He enjoys yelling into the void over things such as the Philadelphia Union, the United States Men's Nation Team (soccer), Eagles, and Penn State football, alongside whatever else comes to mind. Find (and disagree with him) on Twitter (Joe_Lister21).

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