Women's Lacrosse Falls In NCAA Semifinals
May 18, 2013
Middlebury saw its hopes of a national title come to an end as the Panthers fell 8-7 to Salisbury in an NCAA semifinal game at Stevenson University in Maryland. Middlebury ends its season with an 18-3 mark, while Salisbury advances to the NCAA Championship game with a perfect 22-0 record.
Salisbury took a 1-0 lead at the 23:47 mark when Maggie Roundy found Kara Koolage in front. The Panthers tied the game 2:25 later when Chrissy Ritter scored with a high shot cutting to the goal. The Sea Gulls regained the lead at 16:58 when Katie Bollhorst had a free position. Instead of shooting, she made a quick pass down low to Lauren Feusahrens who netted her 63rd of the year. The Panthers tied the game at 2-2 when Ellen Halle scored in transition after a feed from Ritter following a big save from Alyssa Palombo. The goal was her team-leading 57th of the season.
Salisbury regained the lead when Bollhorst found Bethany Baer in front at the 12:20 mark The Panthers answered when Halle found Liza Herzog cutting down the middle for her 30th of the year. Middlebury took its first lead of the game with 3:20 left in the half when Laurel Pascal cut to the middle and scored with a low shot for her 30th of the year. Alice Pfeifer scored the final goal of the half at 1:16, finding an open net after a foul had put Salisbury netminder Ashton Wheatley out of the crease.
Salisbury opened the second half with a 3-0 run, taking a 6-5 lead. Kate Haker scored after taking a feed from Bollhorst just 56 seconds into the second half. Bollhorst then found Lauren Feusahrens for a quick-stick goal. Middlebury looked to regain the lead at the 24-minute mark, but could not convert on three free positions, unable to take a shot on two of the attempts. Kat Gartner nearly scored for the Sea Gulls at the 22:05 mark, but was denied by a big stop from Palomba. Bollhorst earned her third straight assist shortly thereafter, finding Maggie Roundy for her 34th of the year. Trailing 6-5, Middlebury called a timeout.
The Panthers ended the run at 18:06 when Margaret Souther cut down to the middle after a feed from Halle for her 39th of the year. The Sea Gulls regained the lead at 7-6 when Feusahrens ripped a hard shot to the bottom right corner of the net cutting to the goal with 14:40 left to play. Middlebury drew even when Herzog scooped up a ground ball and scored after Ritter’s original shot hit the post at 9:09. Salisbury wasted little time tying the game, as Shelby Nemecek scored down the middle just 37 seconds later to give her team an 8-7 advantage.
Middlebury had a great chance to tie the game with 4:35 left, but shots by Pascal and Emma Kramer were denied with a pair of great saves from Wheatley. Salisbury gained possession and then took the ball down the field before calling a timeout with 3:40 remaining.
Salisbury turned the ball over, but the Panthers returned the favor with 2:15 remaining. Middlebury appeared to have taken over with possession as Hannah Deoul picked up a ground ball, but the team was ruled offsides and the ball was awarded back to the Sea Gulls. Salisbury was able to run the final 1:48 off the clock and emerge with the win.
Middlebury outshot its opponent 24-17 on the day, holding an 11-6 advantage in draw controls. Herzog led the Panthers with a pair of goals, while Halle and C. Ritter each had one goal and one assist. Souther had a team-high four ground balls, while Herzog earned four draw controls. Palomba finished with four saves, three caused turnovers and three ground balls. Halle’s 91 points and 34 assists this season tied her for third on Middlebury’s all-time single-season lists.
Feusahrens led all scorers with three goals, while Bollhorst earned five assists. Wheatley made a season-high 12 saves in goal to go along with five ground balls. This marks the second straight season Salisbury has ended Middlebury’s season, earning a 15-7 win in the NCAA semifinals a year ago.
Souther and Herzog were named to the all-tournament team.