May 30, 2010
2010 NCAA Women's Lacrosse Final
Score: No. 1 Maryland 13, No. 2 Northwestern 11
Records: Northwestern (20-2, 5-0 ALC); Maryland (22-1, 4-1 ACC)
Box Score |
Northwestern vs. Maryland Box Score
2010 Northwestern Lacrosse Statistics
TOWSON, Md. -- Northwestern appeared poised to cruise to its sixth-straight title, pouncing out to a 6-0 first half lead on top-ranked Maryland. But a furious Maryland rally and an extended Wildcat scoring drought proved to be too much as Northwestern drops a hard-fought 13-11 decision in the NCAA championship game at Johnny Unitas Stadium in Towson, Md.
"I'm extremely proud of the way that my players played today," said head coach Kelly Amonte Hiller. "I think they showed a lot of heart. I think they represented our university extremely well. Maryland is a tremendous team. They're not going to let down and they really fought back."
Sophomore Shannon Smith (West Babylon, N.Y./West Babylon) led the Wildcats with three goals and an assist on the night, with senior Danielle Spencer (Rochester, N.Y./Brighton) and freshman Erin Fitzgerald (Mt. Sinai, N.Y./Mt. Sinai) each finishing with a pair of goals. Spencer also added an assist on the night while senior Katrina Dowd (Yorktown Heights, N.Y./Yorktown) finished with just an assist.
From the opening whistle, it looked like a repeat of last year's 21-7 romp of North Carolina in the championship game as Northwestern roared out to a 6-0 lead over the opening nine minutes, led by a pair of goals off the stick of Fitzgerald.
Maryland would rattle off three of its own to cut the gap to three at 6-3, but goals from freshmen _amanda00.html" >Amanda Macaluso (Smithtown, N.Y./Hauppauge) and Taylor Thornton (Dallas, Texas/Hockaday) just 10 seconds apart gave Northwestern some breathing room with an 8-3 advantage at the midway point of the opening half.
However that momentum was short lived as the final 15 minutes belonged to the Terrapins. Maryland would rattle off the final five goals of the opening stanza, with goalkeeper Brittany Dipper making a handful of key saves, to send the championship game into the intermission deadlocked at eight.
That momentum carried into the second as Northwestern remained unable to find the back of the net. Meanwhile, the Terrapins recorded two goals of their own to take their first lead of the game, leading 10-8 with 19:57 remaining. What was going bad turned even worse for Northwestern as Dowd went down hard to turf and had to be helped off the field.
Sophomore Alexandra Frank (Westwood, Mass./Westwood) finally found the back of the net for the Wildcats, finishing off a feed from Smith with 17:39 to go to break a scoring drought which spanned over 27 minutes. With Dowd returning to the game, Northwestern seemed to find a spark as Smith evened things up with her third of the game, knotting the game at 10 with 12 minutes to play.
After another Terrapin goal gave Maryland the lead once again at 11-10 at the 9:51. Spencer appeared to tie the game at 11 three minutes later, but was instead called for an offensive foul. That call proved costly as the Terrapins came downfield and notched a goal less than a minute later, pushing the advantage to two at 12-10.
Spencer found the back of the net with just under three minutes remaining, trimming the deficit to one at 12-11. After losing the ensuing draw, Frank appeared to have a great steal but was whistled for a foul instead. Once again, the foul proved costly as the Terps sealed their first title since 2001 with a goal at the 2:03 mark.
The long-awaited battle between the top two programs in the sport's history didn't disappoint as both the Wildcats and Terrapins battled for the entire 60 minutes. Maryland held a slim advantage in shots (29-26), draw controls (14-12) and turnovers (13-11) while Northwestern won the ground ball battle 13-11.
Spencer notched a game-high five draw controls on the night, finishing with 110 on the year which is the third-best single-season total in NCAA history. Thornton was also a force all over the field for the Wildcats, winning four draws and scooping up a team-best four ground balls.
Sophomore goalkeeper Brianne LoManto (Miller Place, N.Y./Rocky Point) recorded six saves on the night, upping her season total to 159. That total is the second-best single-season tally in program history, one shy of the 160 posted by Morgan Lathrop in 2007.
A record crowd of 9,782 witnessed a great championship game, surpassing Friday's attendance as the largest crowd ever to watch a women's lacrosse game in the United States.
Northwestern closes out the 2010 season with a 20-2 record, and will likely be ranked second nationally when the final polls come out. The Wildcats notched their sixth-consecutive 20-win season, which is the longest in NCAA history, and finished with 14 victories over opponents ranked in the top-20, including eight against the top-10.
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