Temple took its first lead of Saturday’s game against Lafayette College with 33 seconds left in the first half. At halftime, coach Bonnie Rosen told her team that the game wasn’t going to be about strategy, but rather about playing together.
The Owls responded by holding Lafayette scoreless for the final 10 minutes and 39 seconds of the game to come away with an 18-12 win at Howarth Field.
“The victory at the end didn’t feel much different than a one-goal win, to be honest,” Rosen said. “I’m really happy we came away with the win, but we still have so much we have to keep working on.”
Temple needed five goals in the final 4:36 to beat Monmouth University on Feb. 15 and had to come from behind on Saturday after Lafayette scored first with 27:45 left in the half. The Owls (4-1) have conceded the first goal in every game except their season opener against Rutgers University.
Temple knotted the score when graduate attacker Brenda McDermott, who finished with five points, scored with 24:11 left in the first half. Lafayette responded with two goals to go up 3-1 and take what would be its largest lead of the game.
The back-and-forth play continued for the rest of the half and into the second half. Temple came from behind three more times in the first half to erase the Leopards’ lead and tie the game.
Lafayette’s final lead of the half came on with 5:18 to play on a goal by senior midfielder Amanda Case. The Owls scored two goals in the final 3:42 and took their first lead of the game with 33 seconds to go on a goal by sophomore midfielder Amber Lambeth.
Five players score multiple goals. Junior attacker Kira Gensler and McDermott each scored twice. Lambeth and senior attacker Anna Frederick each had four goals, and senior midfielder Morgan Glassford also had a hat trick.
“[They were] pressuring really high and allowed us to dump it low,” Lambeth said. “I feel like a lot of my goals were like that and they were thrown off by that, so it seemed effortless.”
Lafayette came out in the second half the same way as they did in the first and scored two goals within 20 seconds of each other to take an 8-7 lead with 27:15 left to play.
Temple regained the lead after goals from Glassford and Lambeth. Lafayette tied the game 9-9 with 21:34 left to play. Then the Owls went on a 3-0 and never trailed. Leopards senior attacker and midfielder Kirsten Wilhelmsen, who led all scorers with five goals, stopped the Owls’ run when she scored with 14:19 left.
Wilhelmsen scored the Leopards’ final goal with 10:39 left. She put the Lafayette within two goals, but Temple’s defense held the Leopards scoreless for the rest of the game.
The Owls’ defense caused 17 turnovers, nine of which came in the second half. After playing in relief of redshirt-freshman Kelsea Hershey, freshman goalkeeper Maryn Lowell started for the first time this season and played the entire game, recording 11 saves.
“It was a big day for Maryn,” Rosen said. “She knew she was stepping into this role today and she put a lot of work in the past two days trying to get a little bit better with the little things. For her to come out and play such a solid game in every which way was what the team needed.”
Temple’s offense also came alive in the second half, outshooting Lafayette 22-14. The Owls also led in draw controls after splitting the 14 in the first half.
Freshman midfielders Maddie Gebert and Kimmy Weinstock each recorded three draw controls, and Glassford had six to lead all players.
“We talked about how to come up with the draw,” Rosen said. “We made a big adjustment for the draw by putting Kimmy on the draw, and she did a great job.”
Temple will be back in action on Wednesday at 6 p.m. against La Salle at McCarthy Stadium.
“We have so many more games to compete in,” Lambeth said. “I’m just excited to see what else we can do this year.”
Tessa Sayers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @SayersTessa. Follow The Temple News @TheTempleNews and @TTN_Sports.