With the weather getting warmer and a change in seasons on the horizon, spring sports are beginning to kickoff their 2022 campaigns at Rowan University.
On Wednesday, Feb. 23, Rowan’s women’s lacrosse team began their season with a victory against Ursinus College. The game ended with a score of 17-6, giving them a solid start to the year.
While the margin of victory was eleven goals, Rowan had a scary start to the game. They allowed a goal in the first minute of the game, which was then followed up by two more Ursinus scores in the first quarter.
Rowan ended the quarter up 5-3, and focused on making the defensive adjustments necessary to take control of the game.
“We had to change the way we were playing behind the crease,” Head Coach Lindsay Delaney said. “They were beating us behind the cage and we didn’t have help on the other side, so we just addressed those situations. The defense adjusted, and they didn’t really have many issues from there.”
Rowan only allowed three more goals in the final 45 minutes of action. The defensive changes helped open up the offense even more, as Rowan went on a 5-1 run in the second quarter.
“We made some great adjustments after the first quarter,” Coach Delaney said. “The team stayed together, worked through some problems, and finished on both ends. Our defense really started being aggressive and our attacks were finishing their shots.”
As a collective unit, Coach Delaney received nine goals worth of offensive production from her attackmen–the core offensive position in Lacrosse. Fifth-year attackman Ashley Lechliter led that pool of players, as she recorded her tenth career game with three or more goals. Following the game, Lechliter credited her teammates for their collective success in the win.
“We had a lot of different goal scorers [in this game],” Lechliter said. “At one point, all six different goal-scorers were different players, so that’s pretty amazing. There’s a lot of talent on this field from freshman to fifth-years, and that is what is so special about this team.”
Lechliter was not the only player to record a hat-trick, as senior midfielder Shannen Sterner scored three of her own. Sterner and Lechliter were also complimented by six other goal-scorers on the day. One of those being freshman attackman Molly Green, who scored twice in her collegiate debut.
While Rowan was busy putting the ball in the back of the net on offense, the defense and goalkeepers were focused on keeping the ball out of their own.
Senior goalie and starter Reilly Shaup was in net for 55 of the 60 minutes in this game, only exiting the game in the final minutes when it was practically over. In her time spent on the field, Shaup made ten saves, and only allowed one goal in the second half of the game.
Up next, Rowan will begin a two-game road trip against Salisbury on March 1. Will Rowan be able to continue their hot start to the season or will Salisbury give them more issues than they are hoping for?
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