Senior attack Jessica Travers (Asheville, N.C.) scored with 12 seconds left on the clock, and Olivia Gudewich (Frederick, Md.) added a game-high four goals
to lead the Lees-McRae College women's lacrosse team to a thrilling 8-7 victory over visiting Wheeling Jesuit University in non-conference play on Thursday evening at Watauga High School.
Lees-McRae (2-1) converted 5-of-6 free position shots in the contest while recording 45 ground balls and forcing 24 turnovers by Wheeling Jesuit (1-3). The Cardinals controlled 13-of-17 draws and scooped up 49 ground balls, while outshooting the Bobcats by a 27-18 margin.
Gudewich paced the Bobcats with four goals, swelling her team-high total to 11 for the season. Katelin Rooney (Naples, Fla.) added two strikes and a game-high nine ground balls, while Travers tallied her second goal of the campaign and Jenah Tracy (Naples, Fla.) chipped in an assist.
Ximena Dupont (Fort Myers, Fla.) recorded five ground balls and four caused turnovers, while Mia Emmerson (Orlando, Fla.) and Taylor Drake (Jupiter, Fla.) posted eight and seven grounders, respectively. Emmerson also made a season-high 14 saves for the Bobcats.
Jessie Tufnell led the way for Wheeling Jesuit with three goals and one assist, while Allie Fetty added two strikes, one helper, and a game-high seven draw controls. Sara Fitzsimon chipped in one goal and a contest-best nine ground balls, as Cassidy Forsen forced a game-high five turnovers. Stephanie Katona, Fetty, and Forsen each posted six grounders for the Cardinals.
The Bobcats struck first just over seven and a half minutes into the game, taking an early 1-0 lead on a converted eight-meter shot by Rooney before Katona and Tufnell answered for Wheeling Jesuit, giving the Cardinals a 2-1 advantage. Gudewich countered with a pair of strikes for the Bobcats, lifting Lees-McRae to a 3-2 lead with five minutes to go before Tufnell evened the margin at 3-3 heading into the intermission.
After Gudewich opened the second half with her third of the day at the 27:37 mark, the Cardinals answered with a pair of strikes, claiming a narrow 5-4 advantage when Tufnell completed her hat trick with 15:22 to play. The Bobcats responded with three straight goals, taking a 7-5 lead on Drake's sixth of the season at the 6:37 mark.
Wheeling Jesuit quickly countered with a pair of goals, evening the tally at 7-7 on Fitzsimon's first strike of the day with 2:17 left on the clock. The Bobcats would come through in the clutch with less than 30 seconds remaining, when Ximena Dupont forced a turnover and sprung Tracy down the sideline. Tracy made a quick move inside and found Travers on the doorstep, putting the senior in perfect position to rip the winner past the Cardinal goalie with 12 seconds ticks left on the clock.
Lees-McRae returns to action on Thursday, March 14 when the Bobcats travel to Young Harris, Ga. to take on Young Harris College in non-conference play at 2 p.m.
Penguins best Bobcats, 20-1
Sophomore Ryan Harrison (Lake Mary, Fla.) made 10 saves to pace the Lees-McRae College men's lacrosse team, as Dominican University of California outscored the Bobcats by a 12-0 margin in the second half en route to a 20-1 victory in non-conference play at Watauga High School on Thursday evening.
Dominican (2-2) outshot Lees-McRae (0-7) by a 51-11 margin in the contest, including a 22-3 advantage in the second half, while converting 12-of-13 clears and winning 17-of-24 face-offs. The Penguins scooped up 49 grounds balls to the Bobcats' 21, as Lees-McRae forced 12 Dominican turnovers on the night.
Jarrod Brady (Kernersville, N.C.) paced the Bobcats with his second goal of the season, as Harrison posted his sixth game of the campaign with double-digit saves. Britton Baker (Bluffton, S.C.) chipped in a team-high five ground balls, while Kyle Judge (Hampstead, Md.) tallied an assist.
Brock Beall led the way for Dominican with five goals, as Jake Fritz added a hat trick and one assist. Dalton Copeland, Cam Evangelho, and Kevin Powers each chipped in two goals, while Copeland dished out a contest-best three assists. Jake Craycraft posted nine ground balls, as Trevor Garner and Blake Crossman both scooped up eight grounders. Sean Donohue made five saves for the Penguins in the contest.
The Bobcats battled hard throughout the contest, hustling for every ball and contesting each shot from the Penguins. Dominican would jump out to a quick 5-0 lead in the first quarter following a late strike by Powers off a pass from Fritz with 3:10 to go in the period.
The Penguins would push the advantage to 8-0 in the second before Brady answered for the Bobcats with 1:25 left before the break, receiving a pass from Judge and beating the goalie to trim the margin to 8-1.
Dominican responded in the second half, outscoring the Bobcats by a 12-0 margin over the final two quarters en route to the 20-1 victory.
Lees-McRae returns to action on Sunday, March 10 when the Bobcats host Lake Erie College at 1 p.m. on Tate Field.
Photo Courtesy: Ray Cameron, LMC Athletics