CHICAGO – Faced with its toughest defensive opponent so far this season, the University of Chicago women's lacrosse team shook off an early deficit and pulled away in the second half to beat Albion College 13-10 on Friday.
The Maroons improved to 4-0. The Britons dropped to 2-2.
The home side came into the day with a dominating offense that was averaging 18.3 goals per game. However, UChicago's attackers were frequently stymied in close by Albion goalie Jenina Villabroza, who made 18 saves on the day. The Maroons frequently went low on Villabroza, who was constantly in the correct position to swallow up the attempts. Albion's defenders played tight and compact near the goalie circle to discourage any open runs at goal.
Midfielder Karina Schulze provided the opening salvo with a goal six minutes into the match. However, the Maroons hit a dry patch and couldn't get back onto the board for a 10-minute stretch. The Britons took advantage with three unanswered goals as UChicago faced its first deficit of the year.
However, UChicago's top scorers pulled their weight and answered back. Attacker Lally Johnson netted a pair of unassisted goals to even it up at 3-3. Then Schulze took advantage of an Albion yellow card to score a free-position goal a mere 19 seconds later. The first-year then stutter stepped past the defense and threw in a running shot to make it 5-3 with 8:37 remaining in the half.
Albion stayed persistent, trying the game up once more at 5-5. But the Maroons tallied four goals in the last five minutes to recapture all the momentum. Johnson spun around her near-post defender and scored at 8-5. A foul in the final seconds of the first half proved costly, as midfielder Ali Sheehy wound up and buried a free-position shot as time expired.
The Britons locked down for the first 10 minutes of the second half and tallied three-straight to climb to within 9-8. A UChicago timeout paid immediate dividends as the Maroons drew up a play that saw Johnson connect from behind the right post to a streaking Sheehy in front to make it 10-8.
The lead increased to 12-8 with 14 minutes remaining, but Albion threatened with two more down the stretch. With 2:23 left in the game, midfielder Abbey Pouba drew a foul and then came up clutch with a bouncing free-position goal to clinch it at 13-10.
UChicago outshot Albion 40-23 in the game, with a 29-19 ground ball advantage. Turnovers were also in the home team's favor (23-17). After converting 69 percent of their free-position attempts coming into the game, the Maroons struggled in that category, going 4-for-11.
Johnson paced the offense with four goals and two assists while also snagging five ground balls. Sheehy and Schulze contributed three goals each. Schulze was dominant in the center with 11 draw controls to go with four ground balls. Goalkeeper Honor Crandell made five saves.
- Sunday, Mar. 10 @ 1:00 PM – Kalamazoo College at UChicago