It wasn’t easy, but the women’s lacrosse team (6–0, 1–0 Ivy League) took care of business against Penn State (5–3, 0–0 Big Ten), winning 12–11 on Saturday, March 19.
“We knew it was going to be a battle from the beginning, and it was just that,” first-year midfielder Sophie Whiteway, who scored the decisive goal, told The Daily Princetonian.
The win was an inconsistent game for the Tigers that saw them lead by as much as five but also saw them trail in the second half. Princeton took a demanding 7–2 lead during the second quarter only to see the Nittany Lions end the half on a 3–0 run. Coming out of the break, the momentum for Penn State continued as they tacked on three additional unanswered goals in the third quarter to take an 8–7 lead.
The Tigers responded sharply with three unanswered goals of their own to go up 10–8 during the third quarter. Ultimately, the game was tied 11–11 with just under two minutes left when senior defender Marge Donovan came up with a critical draw control (her eighth of the game). The Tigers regained possession, and Whiteway scored the game-winning goal with just 32 seconds remaining, putting the final score at 12–11.
It was an emotional game for Princeton, during which eight different players scored at least one goal. Star senior attacker Kyla Sears — the leading scorer coming into the game — scored only one goal.
However, other players, such as junior attacker Kate Mulham, significantly stepped it up against Penn State; she scored four goals and recorded an assist in an outstanding performance. Underclassmen played a key role against Penn State as sophomore attacker Grace Tauckus, sophomore midfielder Kari Buonanno, and sophomore attacker Ellie Mueller all scored at least one goal each.
The win sees the Tigers extend their win streak to six games to start the 2022 season. They will look to keep the momentum going as they travel to Baltimore on Wednesday, March 23 to take on No. 7 Loyola (MD).
Akshay Swani is a contributor to the Sports and News sections at the ‘Prince.’ He can be reached at email@example.com.