Boxers Win High-Scoring Shootout vs. Wildcats

McMINNVILLE, Ore. - Pacific rallied from a 7-1 deficit behind the scoring of Kelly Stevens (Fr., Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Kaitlyn Harper (Fr., Oregon City, Ore.) to come back to beat Linfield, 17-14, in women's lacrosse action Tuesday at the Linfield Lacrosse Field.

Stevens and Harper each scored four goals for the Boxers, who improved to 5-4 for the season. Anna Gorciak scored seven times for the 'Cats, who dropped to 2-6.

Linfield blitzed Pacific in the opening minutes, scoring three goals in a minute and a half. Isabelle Burke opened the scoring off the first draw, bulging the net with only 15 seconds elapsed. Mariah Jones added another 20 seconds later after sprinting from midfield. Gorciak faked out four Boxers to bag her first tally, slipping untouched between two defenders to slot a shot into the lower-left corner.

The match went without a goal for the next five minutes. Pacific's Stevens pulled one back for the Boxers, but Gorciak popped up again to restore Linfield's lead 22 seconds after. Taylor Fisher would make it 5-1 to the Wildcats before Gorciak completed her hat trick halfway through the first half. Erika Helm-Buckman, who had been denied a goal by the post earlier in the half, gave Linfield a six-goal lead off a free-position shot.

A timeout pep talk by Boxers' coach Wynne Lobel fired up the visitors. Pacific went on a 7-0 run to close out the half. Harper started the scoring, quickly followed by Molly Bailey (So., St. Helens, Ore.) and Elise Talboy (Fr., Boise, Idaho). With five minutes left, Monica Smith (So., Wilsonville, Ore.) cut the deficit to two and Harper scored from a free-position shot to put the score at 7-6. Stevens grabbed her second of the game to tie the game at 7-7, and Smith would give Pacific its first lead with 36 seconds left in the half.

Stevens tallied once more two minutes into the second half, giving Pacific a two-goal cushion for the first time in the match. Jones took a pass Fisher to get one back for the 'Cats less than a minute after. Gorciak tied the game for the second time from a free-position shot, sparking life into the Wildcats early in the second half. Jones put Linfield in front five minutes into the second half with her third goal of the game, making 9-8 in favor of the Wildcats.

Linfield and Pacific traded goals and shared of the lead in the early stages of the second half. Harper tied the game for Pacific before Smith gave them the lead, but Gorciak wouldn't let the Wildcats fall behind though, tying the game once again at 11. Bailey gave the lead back to Pacific halfway through the second half.

Gorciak was Linfield's go-to player, keeping Linfield close with her sixth goal. Carmen Taplin (Fr., Hillsboro, Ore.) put the Boxers back on top 13-12 with less than 10 minutes to play. Stevens gave the Boxers another two-goal lead two minutes later. Jones gave Linfield a lifeline, pulling the hosts within one goal with five minutes to play. Monique Schreiber (Jr., Mercer Island, Wash.), who finished with three assists, set up Gorciak to tie the contest again a minute later.

Pacific refused to let Linfield take the lead easily and broke the Wildcats' hearts in the last two minutes. Harper snatched the go-ahead goal 20 seconds after the restart and Taplin took a pass from Smith to put the match out of reach in the final two minutes. Taplin then set up Abby Coleman (Sr., Beaverton, Ore.) to give the Boxers a three-goal lead, their largest to that point with only 14 seconds on the clock.

Brittany Hartmann (Fr., Portland, Ore.) made nine saves in the win for the Boxers, while Linfield's Danyell Myers made four stops.

The Boxers will try to secure their first winning season on Friday, hosting their final home game against Pomona-Pitzer.

2010-04-07



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