Big Second Half Pushes Gannon Past Kutztown on Senior Day

KUTZTOWN, Pa. - Trailing 5-3 at halftime, Kutztown was unable to contain the Gannon offense in the second half as the Golden Knights went on to win 18-7 on Saturday afternoon in a PSAC lacrosse match-up at Keystone Field.

Kutztown celebrated Senior Day today on its final game of the season, honoring the four-year careers of JoAnn McLaughlin (Cape May, NJ/Lower Cape), Krystine Beodeker (Dingmans Ferry, PA/Delaware Valley), and Lauren Schlitt (Baldwin, NY/Oceanside).

Saturday marks the final day of the conference regular season with neither Kutztown (4-12, 2-10 PSAC) or Gannon (9-8, 6-6 PSAC) breaking into the top six to make the postseason.

The Golden Bears got on the board first when Jillian Spencer (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) found the back of the net off a pass from Taylor Stone (West Babylon, NY/West Babylon) a minute and a half into the game. Spencer and Kelli Serpi (Toms River, NJ/Manchester Township) each knotted unassisted goals as the two teams traded blows until the final minutes of the half. With 3:39 left, Kimberly Neagle initiated a three-goal run for the Golden Knights to put her team up 5-3 at the break.

Gannon carried the momentum into the second half, scoring four goals in the first four minutes. Stone tallied her first goal of the game off a free-position attempt to cut the deficit to 9-4 at the 24:44 mark. Following two GU goals, Stone struck again, this time from Brielle Dickey (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township). Spencer secured the hat-trick off a free-position goal and Cara Lord (Media, PA/Penncrest) found Taylor Sandin (Freehold, NJ/Colts Neck) for KU's final goals of the game.

The passing combinations between Neagle, Tessa Mitchell, and Stevie Lombardoni proved too tough to defend for KU. The trio accounted for 13 of GU's goals and seven assists. Christie Valentine also contributed a hat-trick.

McLaughlin recorded seven saves in net for KU, and Margaret Maslyn made 13 stops for Gannon.

Spencer recorded her eighth hat-trick this season in 16 games. She finishes the season as the team's leading scorer with 34 goals and eight assists. Sandin finishes second with 18, Stone in third with 15, and Dickey in fourth with 11.

Freshman Courtney O'Neill (Stratford, NJ/Sterling) made an immediate impact on the defense, leading the PSAC with 58 groundballs and ranking third in the conference with 33 caused turnovers.

KU has reached the two-win mark in the PSAC this season for the first time since 1989.

* * * *

KUTZTOWN, Pa. - Gannon broke open a tight match with 13 second-half goals and coasted to an 18-7 victory Saturday afternoon in the season finale at Kutztown. As a result, the Lady Knights clinched their 19th consecutive winning season. The program has never had a losing record during its 19-year history.

Gannon trailed 3-2 late in the first half, before exploding for seven consecutive goals during a run that spanned both halves. Kimberly Neagle (Auburn, N.Y./Auburn) ignited the run with back-to-back goals that turned the one-goal deficit into a one-goal advantage. Tessa Mitchell (Rush, N.Y./Rush Henrietta) added another score right before the first half ended, giving the Lady Knights a 5-3 edge at the break.

The late first-half run was a small glimpse of the pending second-half blitzkrieg. Four different Lady Knights scored during the first 3:04 after the intermission to increase the lead to 9-3.

Kutztown momentarily stemmed the tide and played even through the middle portion of the half. The two squads split the next eight goals over the next 13 minutes.

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2014-04-26



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