Getting out to a quick start has been a point of emphasis for the Owls this season.
Junior midfielder Morgan Glassford won the opening draw control and senior midfielder Kirstie Connor scored the first of her four goals 47 seconds into the game to help the Owls defeat St. Joseph’s 16-4 victory on Saturday at Geasey Field.
After St. Joseph’s junior attacker Nora McCallion scored the team’s first goal at the 21:39 mark to bring the Hawks within two, 3-1, the Owls went on a 10-0 run over the next 25 minutes to pull away from the Hawks. Senior midfielder Megan Tiernan scored two of her three goals in the first half to help build the lead.
Controlling possession allowed the Owls to outshoot the Hawks 18-5 in the first half and 29-13 in the game. Temple won 9-of-12 draw controls in the first half to help build an 11-1 lead after 30 minutes.
“I think draw controls really control the momentum of the game and teams who win most of the draw control usually come out on top, so we’ve been working hard, “ said senior attacker Brenda McDermott, who had three assists. “Summer [Jaros] and Morgan do an awesome job on draw control and just making sure other people are ready, so when the ball does hit the ground, if Morgan doesn’t come up with it, we’re ready to be there right with her.”
The Owls had nine different goal scorers Saturday including freshman attacker Quinn Benintende and sophomore attacker Kira Gensler, who each scored their first career goal.
“Certainly getting out to a big lead gives us a cushion for people to start to get some playing time which gives them the necessary experience to play well on game day…And some of our younger players, while they play at a very high level, may not be quite as ready to play on game day,” coach Bonnie Rosen said. “So the opportunity to get them playing time, really gets them ready for games. In addition, we are seeing in practice people playing at a higher and higher level that we can then put and know what we’re putting on the field today.”
The Owls recognized Lily Adkins and her family before the start of the game. Adkins, who turns 10 years old on Sunday, was diagnosed with an ependymoma brain tumor at 14 months old. Adkins successfully underwent treatment and became the second child to be adopted by the lacrosse team in April 2010 through the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation, a nonprofit created in 2005 to improve “the quality of life of children battling pediatric brain tumors and other childhood cancers,” according to its website.
Senior attacker Avery Longstaff is happy she’s been able to see Adkins grow in her four years at Temple.
“She was so shy and reserved and each year we’ve kind of gotten her out of her shell and out of her shell,” Longstaff said. “And it’s so fun to watch her gain confidence. We were taking a picture out there and she was trying to get her little brother involved so it’s so cool to see her grow to be like now she’s the one stepping out of the box and trying to get other people involved. So its just a really neat thing to see her grow up and we’re so lucky to be a part of Friends of Jaclyn, and we all learn a lot from it and we love spending time with the Adkins family.”
The Owls have two more home games left on their five-game homestand, starting with Wednesday against University of Delaware.
Evan Easterling can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @Evan_Easterling.