UM women finally tamed by No. 1 Princeton, 13-9

Terps had beaten Tigers 11 consecutive times

April 25, 2002|By Elliott Denman | Elliott Denman,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

PRINCETON, N.J. - The Maryland women's lacrosse team pounded in the first five goals and came within inches of a sixth straight score, but No. 1 Princeton came roaring back for a 13-9 win over the No. 8 Terps last night at Class of 1952 Stadium.

Maryland (9-8), the NCAA champion for the past seven years, had beaten Princeton 11 straight times (including a 7-6 regular-season decision and a 14-7 triumph in the NCAA semifinals last year) but saw its big early advantage vanish as Princeton (14-1) began living up to its reputation for resilience.

Sonia Judd and Courtney Hobbs, the Terps' Australian Connection, faced a dynamic Princeton duo of Lauren Simone and Charlotte Kenworthy, seniors who starred on Senior Day, in a duel that lived up to its billing before an estimated 2,000 fans.

Judd had three goals and an assist; Hobbs had two goals and an assist before going off with a second-half ankle injury. But Simone and Kenworthy had three goals each while leading the 32-shot assault on Terps goalie Alexis Vanechanos.

Tigers goaltender Sarah Kolodner settled down after the early deficit and registered one impressive stop after another. She saved 9; Vancehanos saved 14.

Alex Fiore slammed in a rebound with 7:10 left to break a 9-9 tie and send the Tigers on their way.

"We couldn't take care of the ball at critical times, leading to too many turnovers, and that kind of hurt us," said Maryland coach Cindy Timchal. "We thought we had the opportunity to break it open in the second half, but you never know in this game. We seemed to gather momentum, but we just couldn't finish.

"Princeton, yeah, they're great. They just got stronger and stronger as the game went on. That 11-game winning streak against them, that was nice. But wasn't it about time they won, huh?"

In a game that produced four ties, Princeton charged back for a 7-6 lead at halftime and won its fourth in a row after a season-opening, 15-13 loss to Georgetown.

Not since the 1994 NCAA championship game - Tigers 10, Terps 7 - had Princeton beaten Maryland.

A failed Princeton clear opened the door for Judd to slap in a backhander that built the early Terps lead to 3-0 and Annie Collins' seven-yard bouncer made it 4-0. Kristie Leggio's midfield steal and quick feed to Judd, easily beating the Kolodner, raised it to 5-0.

At 20:08, though, freshman Elizabeth Pillion's score on a free-position play gave the Tigers their first goal; Kim Smith, a senior from Baltimore, continued the comeback with a short-range score, and the rally was officially under way.

With just 14 seconds left in the half, Kim Smith gave Princeton its first lead, but Maryland rallied to tie it at 7 in the third minute of the second half, with Hobbs feeding Acacia Walker from close range.

But the Tigers couldn't be stopped in the concluding stages and won it going away.

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