Oregon rallies late, but Owls come out on top

Behind six goals from Tabor, the lacrosse team went on to win 10-8.

The saying “history repeats itself” could be used to describe the game senior attacker Jaymie Tabor had Saturday afternoon.

Tabor scored six goals to kick off her sophomore year in a season opening win against Oregon two years ago. Now, as a senior, she did it again in a 10-8 win over the Ducks.

“It was funny coming into this,” Tabor said. “Everyone was joking that, ‘Aw, you could do six goals again.’ I was like ‘I’ll try my best and see what happens’ and it happened.”

“She came to play today,” coach Bonnie Rosen said.  “Her shot was on par, her teammates created movement that allowed her some space and she really…she took the reins and went with it.”

Tabor had four goals before the end of the first half, with her fourth of the game giving Temple a 4-2 lead with 11 minutes left.

But Oregon was able to keep pace with the Owls behind a pair of goals each from senior attacker Shannon Propst, who tallied the game’s opening goal, and sophomore attacker Courtney Valdez.

With the game tied up at four and seconds left in the half, the Owls made one last run into the offensive zone. Sophomore midfielder Kathryn Skahan was awarded a free position shot with three seconds left on the clock, thanks to a foul by Oregon’s sophomore midfielder Olivia Pyne.

Skahan took full advantage of the opportunity in front of her and fired a shot by Oregon’s senior goalkeeper Caroline Federighi, giving Temple a 5-4 lead with one second left in the first half.

In the second, the Owls rallied.

Following Valdez’s third goal of the game, which tied it up at five within the first two minutes, Temple went on a run of four unanswered goals – two more from Tabor and a goal each from sophomores Megan Tiernan (midfield) and Rachel Schwaab (attack).

With a four-goal lead, Temple was sitting comfortably. The defense stepped up and gave Oregon little to work with. Redshirt-sophomore goaltender Jaqi Kakalecik came up with two big saves on Valdez, and the players on the bench were up on their feet, feeding off the energy in front of them.

Everything was going Temple’s way, but a late three-goal rally by Oregon created suspense at the end. Pyne, Propst and Valdez scored goals a little over a minute between each other, and just like that, it was a one-goal game.

“We were just trying to stay positive the whole time,” said Kakalecik, who again split halves with junior goalkeeper Rachel Hall.  “We kept saying, ‘We got it, we got it, we’re good.’”

“We just never got down,” Kakalecik added. “I don’t think any of us thought we were going to lose that game.”

Oregon gained possession on the following draw, but lost it on a foul. Then, with 24 seconds left, sophomore midfielder Kirstie Connor put the game away with her first goal of the season.

With the win, the Owls bounced back from a 17-9 loss to Cornell nearly a week before.

“The loss to Cornell just made us realize that we really need to work hard in practice,” Kakalecik said. “We stayed focused all this week and implemented a whole bunch of stuff. By the time the end of the week was here and the game was here, we were all just so ready to play.”

Now 2-2, Temple is off to Colorado for match-ups with Colorado on Tuesday and Denver on Saturday.

Playing in higher altitude isn’t much of a concern, but with more snow expected to be on the way, getting there is.

“Our first step is hopefully getting out,” Rosen said. “We’ve got a storm to weather right now and [need to] figure out how we’re getting out there, but we’re not preparing any differently for it. We know that, yeah, there’s some altitude but we’ve got a huge bench and we can sub as we need to.”

“Breathing is breathing, but the easiest way to deal with being tired is to keep the ball in your possession and finish your shots,” Rosen added. “Hopefully there will be a little extra motivation to work on our shooting the next couple days and do a better job with that.”

Nick Tricome can be reached at nick.tricome@temple.edu or on Twitter @itssnick215.

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