Thanks to a stifling defensive attack and 29 forced turnovers, the SRU women’s lacrosse team (5-8, 2-6 PSAC) outfought the Fighting Scots of Edinboro (7-6, 3-6 PSAC) in frigid conditions for a 9-7 victory on Tuesday night.
Edinboro added women’s lacrosse in 2009 and has yet to get a win against the Rock.
“We have never lost to Edinboro and this was not the time to start,” senior midfielder Lacey Allis said.
Coming off a three game losing streak, including losses against two nationally ranked teams, SRU was looking for a win to get back on the right track, despite being statistically eliminated from the playoffs.
“At this point in our season we not only needed this win, but wanted it for ourselves and each other,” Allis said. “We’ve worked so hard all year and though we’re out of the playoffs, it’s just about having fun with our friends and enjoying lacrosse now!”
SRU struck first, less than five minutes into the game, when senior attacker Morgan Pettit deposited her 41st goal of the season in the back of Edinboro’s net.
Edinboro would even the score at 1-1 nearly 18 minutes later after back and forth defensive play for either team. The Rock took the lead 2-1 from a shot by Allis but the Fighting Scots answered back quickly with the equalizer 26 seconds later.
That goal by Edinboro was followed by two more goals of their own in the next three minutes to put SRU at a 4-2 disadvantage with three minutes remaining in the half.
Pettit took notice to the deficit and put the Rock within one goal of the opponent followed by a goal by sophomore midfielder Kaytlin Callaghan to even the score at 4-4 heading into halftime.
“Our biggest strength and most consistent part of our game this year has been our ability to keep battling and not back down,” SRU head coach Emily Hopkins said. “We will need to keep doing that this weekend.”
Sophomore attacker Anna-Marie Warrington gave Slippery Rock a 5-4 lead with a goal just under four minutes into the second half.Pettit and Allis each scored over the next four minutes, increasing Slippery Rock’s lead to 7-4.
Edinboro answered with a goal of their own to bring the match within two points for the Fighting Scots, 7-5.
Junior attacker Paige Costatino scored her 31st goal of the season at the halfway mark of the second half, restoring that three-goal lead for SRU, 8-5.
Edinboro responded with two goals in the next five minutes to bring the game within one.
Junior attacker Jess Verbic guaranteed the 9-7 victory for SRU with the final goal of the game with just over eight minutes remaining. Overall, Slippery Rock finished with a 27-20 advantage in total shots and forced 22 turnovers by Edinboro.
“We did work on forcing turnovers on defense,” coach Hopkins said. ” After watching some film we thought we could take advantage of their clears.”
Pettit finished the game with three goals and one assist. Pettit now only needs three goals to hit 100 for her career at the Rock. Allis finished with two goals in the win. Verbic had one goal and one assist. Callaghan, Warrington and Costatino each had a goal for SRU.
Sophomore Jordan Wagner earned the win in goal for the Rock with eight saves and seven goals allowed.
The Green and White have four games remaining this season with opponents whose records combine 30-19 overall.
The final stretch will begin when the Marauders of Millersville (5-8, 1-7 PSAC) visit SRU Friday afternoon at 3 p.m. for a game commemorating the 125th Anniversary Celebration.