GAFFNEY, S.C. -- A second half offensive explosion and solid defense led No. 4 Limestone (4-0, 2-0 CC) to a come-from-behind victory against No. 9 Gannon (3-1, 0-0 PSAC) in a matchup of Top-10 Division II women’s lacrosse teams on Saturday, March 5.

Trailing 5-3 at the half, the Saints came out firing on all cylinders at the start of the second 30 minutes. Junior midfielder Jessie Aguglia raced downfield and scored an unassisted goal at the 27:48 mark and sparked a run of four straight goals for Limestone in the first 4:39 of the half.

She was followed by sophomore midfielder Brittany Howard only 13 seconds later with another unassisted goal and sophomore midfielder Chelsea Treat added a pair just over two minutes later to give the Saints a sudden 7-5 advantage. Sophomore midfielder Jess Fugate broke the stretch for Gannon as she took it herself for an unassisted goal at the 22:35 mark and pulled the Golden Knights to within one goal.

Freshman midfielder Jessica Aguanno gave the Saints some breathing room with a goal at 21:48 to make it 8-6 but GU would once again fight back to within one when a pair of freshman midfielders hooked up as Christie Valentine found Kimberly Neagle to make it 8-7 with 16:52 to play. From there it would be a defensive battle as Limestone registered six shots while the Golden Knights would be held without any attempts the rest of the way as the Saints sealed the narrow one-goal victory.

After weathering a goal within the first 20 seconds of the game for the second straight contest, the Saints responded with a pair of goals over the next 10 minutes to take a 2-1 lead at the 21:48 mark. Jessie Aguglia got Limestone on the board with her first goal of the year and Chelsea Treat followed with her 10th of the year on a free position shot.

Played on a slick field due to the constant rainfall, the Golden Knights began to take advantage of the conditions as they scored four straight goals over the next 21:31 to take a 5-2 lead. Junior midfielder Sarah Grzybinski connected off a pass from senior midfielder Mary Eshenour to tie it before junior attacker Rachel DerCola notched an unassisted score to make it 3-2.

Sophomore attacker Caitlyn Fisher then delivered a pair of goals to give Gannon it’s three-goal advantage. That margin would be cut quickly, however, as senior attacker Casey Wilcox scored with just six seconds remaining in the half to make it 5-3 at the intermission.

Caitlyn Fisher and Kimberly Neagle each recorded a pair of goals to lead Gannon while Rachel DerCola had a goal and an assist. Jess Fugate and Sarah Grzybinski each added a goal while Fugate tied for the team lead with four ground balls. Freshman goalkeeper Margaret Maslyn also had four ground balls and played all 60 minutes in goal, making 11 saves and allowing eight goals to fall to 3-1.

Chelsea Treat was once again the Saints offensive force as she led the team with three goals and Jessie Aguglia added a pair of scores and a team-high tying three ground balls. Jessica Aguanno had a goal, an assist, a pair of ground balls and three draw controls and Brittany Howard had a goal and two ground balls, one of which helped Limestone hang on for the victory late in the game. Casey Wilcox added a solo score.

Sophomore goalie Rashelle McLellan played the entire game in net, making seven saves and allowing seven goals to earn the victory and improve to 4-0 on the season.

As a team, Limestone outshot the Golden Knights 28-18 but 15-6 in the second half. Both teams had high success rates on clears as Gannon was 9-of-11 and the Saints went 10-for-12.

Limestone returns to action on Monday, March 7 when they host yet another member of the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference, Shippensburg, at 2 p.m.