McCormick's five goals lead seventh-ranked Penn State to win against Vandy
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Led by a five-goal performance from sophomore attack Maggie McCormick, the No. 7 Penn State women's lacrosse team opened its 12th ALC campaign with a 20-14 victory against Vanderbilt at Holuba Hall on Sunday afternoon.
The Nittany Lions improved to 5-3 overall and 1-0 in ALC competition, while the Commodores dropped to 1-8 and 0-2, respectively.
McCormick paced Penn State with six points (5g, 1a), while senior Molly Fernandez, junior Mackenzie Cyr and freshman Jenna Mosketti added three goals each. Sophomore midfielder Haley Ford and freshman midfielder Ally Heavens netted two points each, while sophomore Tatum Coffey contributed a three-point game (1g, 2a).
Penn State, which scored 20 goals for the first time since a 20-7 victory against Lafayette in 2009, outshot the Commodores by a 30-28 margin. The Nittany Lions controlled the ground-ball battle, 18-14, and were 16-for-19 on clears. Freshman goalkeeper Emi Smith made six saves, while Vanderbilt's Chelsea Pasfield turned aside seven shots.
The Nittany Lions found themselves down 3-1 within the first 6:11 of the contest. After Fernandez gave Penn State a 1-0 lead at 1:56, the Commodores struck three times within a 1:42 span to take the two-goal advantage. Carly Linthicum, who led Vanderbilt with seven points (4g, 3a), made it 3-1 when she connected on a free-position shot with 23:49 left in the first half.
Penn State held Vanderbilt to three tallies for the remainder of the half as they ended the stanza on a 10-3 run. An Eldersburg, Md., native, McCormick scored three straight markers to give Penn State a 4-3 lead before Olivia Goodman tallied for Vanderbilt with 18:47 left in the half.
With 16:58 remaining, Heavens began another run of three straight for the Nittany Lions. Ford and Mosketti added their firsts of the game to make it a 7-4 advantage before Alexa Kunowsky brought Vanderbilt to within a pair.
The Nittany Lions ended the frame on a 4-1 run. McCormick and Coffey tallied at 18:54 and 20:06, respectively, before Linthicum scored with 4:22 remaining. Sophomore Kelly Lechner and Ford ended the half with markers with 3:25 and five seconds remaining, respectively.
In the second stanza, the Commodores brought the game to as close as three goals, but the persistent Nittany Lion attack answered each time. Penn State garnered goals from Fernandez, Mosketti and Cyr, who extended her point-scoring streak to 15 games, early in the frame as the Nittany Lions took a 14-9 advantage.
After two markers from the Commodores, a pair of Cyr goals, the latter coming with 13:01 remaining, sandwiched a Heavens strike to extend the Penn State lead to 17-11. Linthicum scored her final two goals of the game in a 27-second span to bring Vanderbilt to within four, but the Nittany Lions ended the contest on a 3-1 run.
Mosketti and Fernandez netted markers with 8:11 and 6:24 remaining, respectively, before Mallory Schonk scored for Vanderbilt with 5:49 left. McCormick closed out the scoring with her team-leading 23rd point with 3:10 remaining in the game to account for the 20-14 final.