Virginia women end up ahead of No. 4 Loyola, 8-7

Greyhounds fall short in pair's latest tight game

College Lacrosse

April 26, 2001|By Jeff Zrebiec | Jeff Zrebiec,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

The annual women's lacrosse game between Loyola and Virginia usually means two things. One, it will have NCAA tournament seeding implications and two, the outcome will be decided by one goal.

That's why it's easy to say that things pretty much went according to form as the eighth-ranked Cavaliers built a three-goal, second-half lead and held on for an 8-7 win over the fourth-ranked Greyhounds yesterday at Curley Field.

It was the fifth time in seven games since 1996 that the outcome had been decided by one goal, and the third time in a row. Virginia has won three of those five. Both teams entered the game off losses, with Virginia (10-6) having fallen to top-ranked Maryland, 7-6, on Friday and Loyola (12-3) having lost to James Madison, 6-5, on Sunday.

"I think the monkey was on our back because they had good wins earlier in the season, but we needed to get a big win against a team that's ahead of us," said Cavaliers coach Julie Myers.

The win was preserved when junior Lauri Kenis stepped in front of Loyola senior Jen Testrake and intercepted a pass with time winding down, allowing the Cavaliers to run out the clock. It looked as if Testrake would have gone in alone on Virginia junior goalkeeper Liz McCarthy.

"You know Loyola can put that run together at any time," Myers said. "Our team made some great defensive stands when we needed it, and they just ran out of time."

Loyola, which has made a habit all season of falling behind and then coming back, engineered a rally that cut an 8-4 Virginia lead at the 20-minute mark to 8-6 with 14:29 to play after a goal by junior Stacey Morlang (two goals).

But McCarthy stood tall, making several big saves down the stretch and allowing just one goal, by senior Megan Santacroce (two goals) with 32 seconds to play.

"Our defense made it easier for me because they made us take some tough shots," McCarthy said.

"We tried to mix it up, but we just didn't move the goal today," said Loyola coach Diane Geppi-Aikens whose team outshot Virginia, 27-15. "Our shooting was one of our downfalls."

After leading 3-2 at halftime, the Cavaliers scored the first two goals of the second half to put the Greyhounds in a 5-2 hole. Virginia got four goals and an assist from senior midfielder Jamie Haas and three goals from senior Mills Hook (St. Paul's).

Loyola will try to rebound Saturday against Maryland in College Park.

"The only thing we can do is become a stronger team and learn from this loss," Santacroce said.

Virginia 3 5 - 8

Loyola 2 5 - 7

Goals: V-Haas 4, Hook 3, Aumiller; L-Morlang 2, Santacroce 2, Testake 2, Eyler. Assists: V-Cangemi 2, Banks, Hook, Haas; L-Warnock. Saves: V-Ames 9; L-Dabrowski 13.

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