April 18, 2009

Courtesy of Dartmouth

HANOVER, N.H. -- The Dartmouth women's lacrosse team took an early lead against Ivy rival Princeton but the Tigers came charging back in the second half to take a 14-4 victory today at Scully-Fahey Field.

#14 Dartmouth (7-5, 4-2 Ivy) had plenty of support from a boisterous crowd that braved the chilly weather but #7 Princeton (11-2, 5-1 Ivy) brought the heat, holding a 35-18 shot advantage. Time of possession was heavily in Princeton's favor and the Tigers capitalized on breakaways that led to goals throughout the game.

"I give a lot of credit to Princeton, they came into our field and executed their game plan extremely well," said head coach Amy Patton. "I don't think we're 14-4 worse than Princeton - I think the key right now for us is to have every player thinking about what we could have done better today and moving on to BU because we have plenty of games left that can get us into the NCAA Tournament."

Princeton now holds a 20-16 lead in the all-time series, though Dartmouth has won four of the last six meetings.

The Big Green was fired up in the opening minutes of the game, but the excitement led to a few early miscues. The Tigers ultimately struck first after a Dartmouth foul allowed them to set up their offense. Allison Behringer scored her third o the season off a feed from Katie Cox for a 1-0 lead at 22:39.

Dartmouth buckled down and got it right back, however, tying the score at 1-1 just 14 seconds later. Sophomore Kat Collins (Darien, Conn.) won the ensuing draw and stormed down the field. She pitched the ball off to rookie Kirsten Goldberg (Cockeysville, Md.) who could not control the pass but scooped it up quickly and fired all in one motion for a beautiful goal.

Senior Katherine Chiusano (Medford, N.J.) put the Big Green ahead when she came around from the back of the cage and caught Princeton's Erin Tochihara off guard, hammering home a goal at 19:52. Dartmouth extended its lead to 3-1 just over two minutes late when Collins barrelled through the defense, spun off her defender and rocketed one past Tochihara.

The Big Green won the ensuing draw control but Princeton's defense would not allow another quick goal. Though the offense cooled off, Dartmouth had several chances to increase its lead but was unable to convert and Princeton took over. Dartmouth goalkeeper Julie Wadland (Andover, Mass.) made three big saves in a four minute span but ultimately Princeton's Anne Murray got past her on a two-on-one with the assist from Holly McGarvie at 8:59.

The teams traded missed and saved shots on the next several possessions before Princeton's Lizzy Drumm slipped a low one past Wadland to tie the game 3-3 at 3:31. The Tigers got two more quick goals before halftime and after things had once looked so promising for the Big Green, the home team trailed 5-3.

Dartmouth came out determined in the second, maintaining possession with four good looks at goal in the first five minutes. Next it was Princeton's turn to test the waters and like the Big Green, the Tigers controlled the ball for a five minute period. They were able to convert eventually when Kristin Schwab scored on a free-position shot at 19:50. It was the third in just eight minutes for Princeton  after Wadland saved the first two.

Sophomore Greta Meyer (Denver, Colo.) got it back for Dartmouth with a good free position goal of her own to make it 6-4, Princeton at 16:43. The crowd was rejuvenated and the Big Green appeared poised for a comeback.

Princeton had other ideas, however, and goals by Marie McKenna at Kristin Schwab just 20 seconds apart gave the Tigers an 8-4 lead by 14:25. The Tigers continued to capitalize on missed shots by the Big Green, riding a wave from seven second-half saves by Tochihara as defense led to offense. Back-to-back free position goals by Anne Murray put Princeton up 12-4 at 4:39 and the Tigers had no intentions of stopping, scoring twice more in the final two minutes including once with four seconds to play for the 14-4 final. Ultimately, Princeton tallied eight unanswered goals in the last 15 minutes of the contest.

The Tigers put 25 of their 35 shots on goal and went 5-of-10 on a host of free positions. The Big Green took 18 shots in the game, 11 on goal and was 1-of-4 on free positions.

Despite giving up the second-most goals of the season, Wadland kept the Big Green going with 11 saves and four ground balls. Fellow junior Colleen Olsen (Avon, Conn.) picked up a game-high seven ground balls and caused two turnovers.

Dartmouth has four more big games on the schedule as it continues its quest for an NCAA Tournament bid. The Big Green starts it off at #11 Boston University this Wednesday night April 22 at 6:00 p.m.