Four straight goals late in the second half led East Stroudsburg to a 14-10 women's lacrosse victory over Wilmington University on a cold and rainy Tuesday afternoon at the WU Athletics Complex.
The teams traded blows through the first 45 minutes of the contest as the game was tied 6-6 at the half and 8-8 with 20 minutes left before the Warriors (1-0) scored six of the final eight goals of the game. The Wildcats (1-4) were hurt throughout the game by 29 turnovers and a 16-10 disadvantage on draw controls.
The first half was as closely contested as the two teams could play, as they swapped the opening four goals in the first 11 minutes. After East Stroudsburg scored back-to-back goals, the Wildcats received back-to-back goals from Maddie Hewitt to retie the game at 4-4 with 11:51 to play.
The teams would split the final four goals of the first half with Hewitt scoring her fourth goal of the game with 1:55 to play to round out the scoring. East Stroudsburg lead, 17-14, in shots in the first half while the Wildcats held slight advantages in ground balls, 21-20, and draws, 7-6, in the first half.
The Warriors scored the first goal of the second half in the first minute but the Wildcats again responded with the tying goal moments later. The teams traded the next two goals once again, with Megan Keffer tying the game, 8-8, off an assist from Rebekah McCurry with 20:22 to play.
East Stroudsburg scored the next two goals to grab a 10-8 lead with 9:44 to play. It looked as though the Wildcats were going to respond on the attack again but the Wildcats only got one goal from McCurry before the Warriors scored four straight to take a commanding 14-9 lead with less than two minutes to play. La-Dae Boykin netted the final goal of the game with 5 seconds left, but it was too little too late as the Wildcats dropped their home opener, 14-10.
Hewitt led the Wildcats with four goals on five shots while McCurry added three goals and two assists. Boykin tallied a pair of goals off the bench for the Wildcats while Keffer added a goal and assist. McCurry led all with eight ground balls, adding four draws, and seven caused turnovers. Chelsie Maher led the defense with seven ground balls.
Lauren Nunes and Kaitlynn Wiltraut led the Warriors with five goals each, while Nunes added an assist for a game high six points.
Corinne Dries recorded 14 saves for the Wildcats while Jessica Maxwell made six stops for the Warriors in the victory.
The Wildcats have a week to prepare for their Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference opener when they host Holy Family next Tuesday. The opening draw on St. Patrick's Day is scheduled for 4 p.m. at the WU Athletics Complex.