For the third straight game, the women’s lacrosse team started off in a 2-0 hole. And, as like the team’s previous two contests, it rode a strong finish in the second half en route to a comeback victory.
The Owls topped La Salle, 9-7, Wednesday in a road win, and had nine different players score each of the team’s tallies.
“Today was such a great representation of what we’re trying to do,” coach Bonnie Rosen said. “[We’re] playing so many players, and handling the challenges in terms of fielding the momentum in a game and creating the chemistry as we change it up. At the same time we’re doing what we’re hoping for, which is creating depth and making it harder for teams to match up against us.”
The Owls (3-0) didn’t score until senior attacker Macie Hauck was able to sneak the ball by La Salle goalkeeper Gabby Antonelli with 23 minutes, 23 seconds left in the first half. The tally made it 2-1, and, 31 seconds later, a Megan Pinkerton goal tied the game.
For the rest of the half, the two teams traded goals, getting one from freshman attacker Nicole Barretta, who is now tied for the team lead with five on the season, and the other from junior midfielder Nicole Tiernan, leading to a 4-4 halftime score.
The Explorers drew first blood almost two minutes into the second half, but less than 30 seconds later Temple sophomore midfielder Morgan Glassford responded with a goal of her own. After a La Salle score and Megan Tiernan’s second goal of the season, La Salle’s freshman attacker Brittany Edwards put the ball in the net to go up by one with 22:55 left in regulation.
It didn’t happen again. Temple held La Salle scoreless for the rest of the game, while scoring three goals of its own to come out on top and complete yet another comeback. Maddie McTigue fueled the defensive charge, leading the team on Wednesday with three caused turnovers and three ground balls.
“We were really comfortable right before halftime with our matchups,” junior goalkeeper Jaqi Kakalecik said. “We were a little mismatched at first, but we figured out what to do. Once we realized that we had the momentum [in the second half] and that we were able to stop them, the mentality on defense was really good.”
A free-position goal, one of four on the day for the Owls, by Temple junior attacker Avery Longstaff with 19:44 left in regulation tied the game at 7. Junior attacker Kathryn Skahan scored the go-ahead tally with just under 18 minutes to play, and sophomore attacker Carly Demato scored her fifth goal of the season – which ties her for the team lead – four minutes later to open the gap.
“I think that once we got the first one and tied it, we read into this really good feeling,” Megan Tiernan said. Once we had the lead by one and then got up to two, we just did not want to let up at all. We just kept going really hard and we spaced out our offense to give us more space to drive the ball, so we could bring them out and open up cuts. It was a really good team working together on offense.”
Temple will attempt to make it four wins in four tries on Saturday when it plays Cornell at home. The game will start at 1 p.m.
Matt Cockayne can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @mattcockayne55.