Rock lacrosse picks up eighth win

Published by , Author: Jake Bartus - Rocket Contributor, Date: April 5, 2017
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After being defeated for the first time on April 1, The Slippery Rock lacrosse team returned to the field in a non-conference match-up against the Wheeling Jesuits Cardinals.

After the loss to Bloomsburg, head coach Emily Hopkins had the team working on their shooting.

“We really focused on our shooting the last couple of days, our shooting wasn’t that good at Bloomsburg,” Hopkins said. “Which was evident by how many shots we had and how many goals we had. We were looking for a bounce back, rebound kind of game.”

Slippery Rock would bounce back in a big way. The Rock defeated Wheeling Jesuit by a score of 14-3. Wheeling Jesuit started the scoring, but Slippery Rock used a 10-0 run to lead 10-3 at the halftime break. The Rock had 10 different scorers in the game, led by a hat trick from redshirt sophomore Tia Torchia.

Hopkins has been pleased with the balanced attack her team has shown this year.

“The balanced attack has been huge for us. If someone is having an off day, there are other people to step up and fill those roles,” Hopkins said. “It’s definitely hard for opposing defenses, I don’t think there is any one person you can key in on our team.”

After Torchia tied the game nine minutes and 24 seconds in, the rest of the game was all Slippery Rock. Following Torchia’s first goal, her 17th on the season, redshirt junior Ally Culhane scored her eighth on the year.

Torchia then scored again, followed by senior Chynna Chan who recorded her ninth goal of the season. After Chan scored, sophomore Erin Brown scored her third goal of the season. Junior Bre Vodde made a lead 6-1 after her 17th goal on the year. Torchia completed the hat trick with her 19th on the season and Vodde scored her 18th.

Senior Caitlynn Palladino tied Torchia in the goal department when she scored her 19th on the year to make it  9-1. Freshman Sami Gentzler closed the scoring in the first half when she netted her third goal of the season with four seconds left in the half.

Junior goalie Emily Bitka started the game and got her eighth win of the season after playing the first half, making one save and allowing the lone goal. Freshman Tori Greco played the second half and made two saves and allowed two goals.

In the second half offensively for The Rock, senior Brittany Brewer scored her fourth goal of the season. Also scoring for The Rock in the second half were senior Kaleigh Murray, who scored her first of the season, freshman Tori Penders with her sixth of the season and capping, the scoring off, Palladino with her team-leading 20th goal.

Hopkins was pleased was the total team effort, saying, “Top to bottom, everyone was checking in and helping out. The intensity on the sidelines and everything as well.”

Slippery Rock returns to action with back-to-back games on Friday and Saturday afternoon. Friday afternoon, Kutztown University comes to Mihalik-Thompson Stadium for a game that starts at 3 p.m.

Hopkins said the back to back games will be tough.

“Two games back-to-back is really tough, so it will be about focusing in on the next opponent and after that game focusing in on West Chester,” Hopkins said. “But (Thursday) will be all about Kutztown and preparation and looking at the next game and win.”

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