A strong first half allowed the Wilmington University women's lacrosse team to pick up its first victory of the 2015 season, 14-8, at Delaware State on Saturday afternoon.
The Wildcats (1-1) jumped out to 9-2 halftime lead before cruising to the 14-8 victory over NCAA Division I and in-state foe Hornets (0-4).
Despite controls one fewer draw throughout the contest, the Wildcats forced 23 turnovers and picked up 19 ground balls to lead the way. The Wildcats outshot the Hornets, 36-20, for the game and 22-5 in the first half.
Senior Maddie Hewitt and redshirt junior Sara LeBrun led the visitors with three goals each while Gabby Spalt set up the offense with a team high four assists and four points. Megan Keffer scored a goal and added two assists while picking up a team high four ground balls.
Leading 3-2 halfway through the first half, the Wildcats rattled off six straight to end the half, getting free position shots by Hewitt and Keffer for the final two goals of the half.
Delaware State came out and scored four of the first five goals of the second half, closing the gap to as few 10-6 with 14:02 showing on the scoreboard. But the Wildcats were able to stem the tide, getting a goal from sophomore Morgan Tildon to start a string of three of the next four goals to open the lead back out to 13-7. Freshman La'Dae Boykin capped the scoring with 17 seconds left, getting an assist from Keffer for her second goal of the game.
Corinne Dries stopped eight shots in goal for the Wildcats, making seven saves in the second half to give Wilmington the victory. Rhian Sellers made 10 stops for the Hornets, six of which came in the first half.
The Wildcats now head to the Sunshine State for a pair of games next week, starting with nationally ninth ranked Florida Southern on Tuesday. The Wildcats end the Florida trip with a game at Tampa on Friday.
Tuesday opening draw at Florida Southern is scheduled for 7 p.m.