No. 2 Syracuse Breezes Past Canisius in Home Opener

SYRACUSE, N.Y. Syracuse senior Alyssa Murray (West Babylon, N.Y.) moved into a tie for fourth place on the school's all-time goals scored list and led the women's lacrosse squad to an 18-6 victory against Canisius on Sunday, Feb. 16 in the Carrier Dome. The home opener was played in front of 1,442 fans, which is the fourth-highest single-game total in school history.

Freshman Taylor Poplawski (Lafayette, N.Y.) scored a season-high four goals and finished with five points, while sophomore Kayla Treanor (Niskayuna, N.Y.) had three goals and two assists. Murray tallied a game-high six points on two goals and four assists. She now has 171 goals in her career, which tie her for fourth place on the career leader list with Leigh Ann Zimmer (2001-04).

Sophomore Kelly Cross (Oreland, Pa.) started the scoring when she found the back of the net off an assist from Murray at the 24:45 mark. The Orange (3-0) scored two more times in the next 1:30 on tallies by Treanor and senior Amy Cross (Oreland, Pa.) as SU started the game with eight unanswered goals. Megan Cuddy halted Syracuse's scoring run with back-to-back goals to bring Canisius (0-1) within six with 3:39 remaining in the half.

With Syracuse leading 10-2, Poplawski recorded three straight goals in the final 1:45 of the half to give the Orange a 13-2 halftime lead. She scored an unassisted goal at the 1:46 mark and then found the back of the net again 12 seconds later off an assist from Murray. Her final goal came with six seconds remaining on the clock off an assist from junior Kailah Kempney (Carthage, N.Y.).

The teams traded goals to start the second half, but three consecutive goals by Murray, junior Devon Collins (Rochester, N.Y.) and Treanor gave Syracuse its largest of the game at 18-5 with 9:30 to play. Maria Kotas scored on an assist from Taylor Giglio with 2:10 remaining for the 18-6 final.

Collins, Amy Cross, Kelly Cross and junior Gabby Jaquith (Cazenovia, N.Y.) finished with two goals apiece, while Kempney had two assists. Jaquith also had an assist, as did junior Mallory Vehar (Hudson, Ohio), the first of her career.

The Orange was again dominant in the circle, winning 17 of 26 draws. Kempney led the way with seven. She now has 171 in her career, which rank second on SU's career leader list.

Syracuse recorded 40 shots and 21 ground balls to 14 shots and 11 ground balls for Canisius. Junior Kelsey Richardson (Memphis, N.Y.) recorded two saves in the first half for SU, while senior Alyssa Costantino (West Islip, N.Y.) had three after intermission. Kayla Scully had 12 saves for Canisius.

The Orange goes on the road for its next two games. Syracuse makes its ACC debut on Sunday, Feb. 23 at Virginia before traveling to Chestnut Hill, Mass. to face Boston College on Wednesday, Feb. 26.

* * * *

Canisius College fell to No. 2 Syracuse (3-0, 0-0 ACC) in the team's season opener on Saturday afternoon. The Orange scored the game's first eight goals en route to topping the Griffs 18-6.

I thought our girls battled to the end, which is a good sign, but you can't spot a team an eight goal lead and expect to win, said head coach Scott Teeter. I thought Kayla played very well in net and Meghan Cuddy did a good job of finishing her chances. But, I also thought we struggled to clear the ball, when you can't get it out of your end, chances are that ball is going to end up in your net.

Junior Kayla Scully tied a career high with 12 saves, and junior Meghan Cuddy scored three times in the loss, including the first two goals of the season for the Griffs.

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