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Women's lacrosse beats top-ranked Virginia

The women’s lacrosse team opened their season last Saturday against No. 4 Virginia and came out with a win at 14-7.

The Tigers had nine different goal scorers, including junior Olivia Hompe and sophomore Abby Finkelston, who both had hat tricks. Sophomore Ellie McNulty scored twice and senior Stephanie Paloscio had both a goal and an assist. Junior Amanda Leavell had four draw controls and caused two turnovers while senior captain Liz Bannantine had two ground balls.

Though the Tigers doubled up against the Cavaliers, Saturday’s game was a competitive one. The two teams traded goals for much of the game, neither holding a significant advantage over the other until No. 12 Princeton took over the game with 5-0 run in the second half and finished the game at 14-7.

Just as the offense proved to be a threatening force on Saturday, the defense anchored the team from the back. Junior Ellie DeGarmo tallied a total of 13 saves, a career high, and was named the Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week for the first week of the lacrosse season.

DeGarmo was impressed not only with her individual achievements in the season opener but also her team’s collective performance. "I think our game was a huge success," said DeGarmo. "Individually, I think I gained more confidence and became more grounded as the game went on and I shook off the initial first-game jitters. The team, up and down the field, played unbelievably. We have so much depth this year and it was so exciting to have nine different people score goals. I also have to give a shout-out to the defensive unit because they don't get enough credit: they were a brick wall yesterday and they were instrumental in forcing the kinds of bad shots that I can see well and have a good chance at stopping."

Senior Maddy Lynch, a returning starter and a key member of the defense, also praised her team’s performance in their season opener. "I could not be more proud of this team and the way they performed today. I expected good things but that was something else." Lynch attributes their early success to their pre-season preparation. "We were held to higher physical standards this season, with prep starting over the summer. This team has worked incredibly hard to meet this standard and there has been a lot of individual extra work put in outside of practice, which our play really reflected."

DeGarmo believes her team’s success on the field is also a reflection of their unity off the field. "This year's team is the most close-knit group I've ever been a part of," DeGarmo said about the 2016 group. "We just mesh so well and the different personalities and unique interests of each person contribute to the bonds we form and the love we have for one another. I truly consider my teammates to be my best friends. I think us knowing one another so well off the field is one of the major reasons that we are so successful on the field. We want to work our hardest and push ourselves for the girls next to us. We also know how to best react and respond to specific individuals when they are having a bad day or not playing well in practice or a game."

Princeton plays at Drexel on Wednesday, before they return home to square off against Georgetown at 1 p.m. on Saturday.