March 23, 2011
Watch Game Highlights
Site: Evanston, Ill. (Lakeside Field)
Score: No. 2 Northwestern 16, No. 11 Syracuse 11
Records: NU (8-0, 1-0 ALC), Syracuse (2-5, 0-0 Big East)
Next NU Event: Saturday, March 26 at Massachusetts Amherst, Mass. 6 p.m. CT
Northwestern 16, Syracuse 11 Box Score
2011 Northwestern Season Statistics
EVANSTON, Ill. -- In weather conditions more reminiscent of a late-season Bears game at Soldier Field than a lacrosse match, No. 2 Northwestern got off to a significant early lead and kept No. 11 Syracuse at bay the rest of the way in a 16-11 victory over the Orange Wednesday in Evanston. Junior Shannon Smith spearheaded NU's attack, recording her second six-goal game of the season, while Erin Fitzgerald chipped in with a three-goal effort.
Northwestern improved to 8-0 on the year and also won for the eighth consecutive time against the Orange, doing so despite a constant southbound wind carrying rain and snow for much of the game.
By the time Smith scored her first goal of the game with nine minutes gone by, Northwestern had already amassed a 6-1 lead thanks to contributions from five different goal-scorers. Freshman Kelly Rich scored twice in that span, giving her 13 goals on the season and eight in the last three games.
NU's dominance early in the game was spurred on by its success off the draw controls, maintaining seven lengthy possessions to the Orange's two through the first 10 minutes.
Syracuse sophomore Michelle Tumolo scored a trio of first-half goals to help the visitors keep pace at 6-4, but the Wildcats made sure to earn some breathing room before the end of the half. Fitzgerald netted her second of the game off a free position shot before Smith scored twice to close the frame, the last of which came with only 0.5 seconds showing on the scoreboard. Smith isolated herself against her defender with her back to the cage and turned to whip home a shot past SU goalkeeper Liz Hogan as NU took an 8-4 lead into the break.
Syracuse netted three of the first five goals of the second half, including two by Tee Ladouceur, but the Wildcats made their move with just under 20 minutes to play. Amanda Macaluso created her own offense with a dodge to the right of the cage and finished for her second of the night, and Smith came in with two goals only 25 seconds apart to give Northwestern an insurmountable 14-7 lead with 17:51 to go.
Syracuse did manage to piece together a late run to cut the deficit to 15-11, but Northwestern did well to drain clock and maintain possession down the stretch. For the game, NU claimed 22 draw controls while junior Alex Frank hauled in as many as the entire SU team for the game with seven.
On the defensive end, goalkeeper Brianne LoManto posted her third nine-save game of the season for Northwestern, coming up with several saves at close range, while Liz Hogan helped keep the Orange close with 13 saves.
Northwestern faces another ranked opponent Saturday when it travels to take on No. 20 Massachusetts at 6 p.m. CT in Amherst.
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