Monmouth University’s (6-7, 3-1 MAAC) women’s lacrosse team rallied from a seven goal deficit but ultimately fell short to Drexel University (6-7, 1-1 CAA) on Saturday night in the Hawks’ final non-conference match of the season.
Drexel opened up a 7-0 lead late in the first half before Monmouth awoke, scoring five of the next six goals to close to 8-5 with 14:26 to play. The Hawks would have a few chances at the Dragon net but the two teams went scoreless for the next 13 minutes before Emily Duffey scored her third goal of the game with 90 seconds remaining to push the lead to 9-5. Sophomore Michelle Gonzales (Marlton, N.J./Cherokee) tallied the final goal of the game with 36 seconds left but Mu ultimately fell 9-6.
“It took us a while to get used to their level,” said MU Head Coach Denise Wescott. “In the second half we showed that we could play with a team of that caliber but we need to start the game off like that. I thought our bench did a great job including Kristina (Vangeli) who did some solid things defensively and helped us get the draw more than Drexel. It was good to see the team not fold and come back and out score them in the second half. Hopefully that will give us some confidence heading in to the end of our conference play.”
The Dragons rattled off seven goals in the first 14 minutes of the game, scoring on seven of eight shots. Duffey and Joelle Hartke each scored a pair of goals while the Hawks mustered just two shots over that span. Freshman Olivia Higson (Cheadle Hulme, England/Withington) broke the streak scoring in her second consecutive game on a free position attempt with 5:31 to play. Three minutes later Allison Stathius (Delran, N.J./Delran) scored to cut the Dragon lead to five heading into halftime.
Senior Stephanie Anderson (Wading River, N.Y./Shoreham/Rutgers) scored to open up the second frame on a feed from Kaleigh Gibbons (Candia, N.H./Central/RMU) with 25:53 remaining. Drexel’s Kelly Palace expanded the lead to 8-3 on a free position attempt but Anderson and freshman Claudia LaMarca (West Long Branch, N.J./Shore Regional) notched back to back goals to put the Hawks back by three with 14:26. Monmouth had two shots over the next 13 minutes before Duffey’s goal put an end to MU’s comeback attempt.
Monmouth goalie Katie Donohoe (Peterborough, Ontario/Holy Cross Catholic Secondary) made six saves in the contest, with three ground balls. Drexel held a slight 17-16 advantage on shots with the Hawks holding a firm grasp on draw controls, winning 11 of 17. Drexel’s Teresha Bradley had four saves in net.
The Hawks return home on Wednesday for a 3 p.m. game against Iona on Monmouth Stadium.