LEXINGTON, Va. — The second-ranked Washington and Lee women's lacrosse team ended the first half with 14 consecutive goals on its way to an 18-9 victory over 20th-ranked Ithaca on Sunday in the second round of the NCAA Tournament at Watt Field.
With the victory, the Generals (18-2) have won 15 straight games, tying the longest winning streak in program history. The team also claimed 15 wins in a row in 2003 and 2017. It was also the 19 consecutive win at home dating back to March 17, 2018, which ties the longest such streak in program history.
W&L trailed, 2-1, in the contest following a goal by the Bombers' (14-7) junior attacker Bailey Herr, but then three straight goals from junior attacker Dani Murray (Denver, Colo./Kent Denver) ignited a 14-0 run for the Blue and White.
The Generals led 4-2 after Murray's hat trick and senior attacker Maddy Graves (Cos Cob, Conn./Greenwich) notched a goal off an assist from senior attacker Cordelia Peters (Larkspur, Calif./Hotchkiss) to extend the lead to 5-2. Senior midfielder Brianna Hayes (Commack, N.Y./St. Anthony's) then registered her 18th goal of the year off an assist from Graves to give W&L a 6-2 lead at the 15:44 mark.
Senior attacker Haley Tucker (Manakin-Sabot, Va./St. Catherine's) scored just 17 seconds later, and Graves followed with her second of the game to push the margin to 8-2 with 13:57 remaining in the period. Tucker tallied another goal, and then Murray notched her fourth of the contest, as the Blue and White continued to pull away, stretching the lead to 10-2 at the 8:41 mark.
Over the final eight minutes, W&L scored five more times to effectively put the game away at halftime, 15-2. Peters registered two of those goals, while sophomore midfielder Claire Fulton (Hagerstown, Md./Saint James School), Tucker and first-year attacker Katherine Faria (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y./Cold Spring Harbor) each had one.
Ithaca outscored the Generals, 7-3, in the second half, but the game was never in doubt over the final 30 minutes, as W&L held on for the nine-goal victory. The Bombers had 14 turnovers in the contest, with the Blue and White causing seven. The Generals only turned it over seven times, but Ithaca held a 17-11 advantage in draw controls.
Along with her five goals, Murray had two assists for a game-high seven points. Tucker totaled four goals, while Peters had two goals and three assists. Graves finished the game with three goals and one assist, and Fulton notched two goals.
Sophomore attacker Landon Shelley (Charlotte, N.C./Myers Park) had a game-high four assists, while junior attacker Collette Murray (Manhasset, N.Y./Manhasset) added three helpers. Senior attacker Rebecca Wellford (St. Louis, Mo./MICDS) led the team with six draw controls, and junior defender Caitlin Anderson (Manhasset, N.Y./Manhasset) chipped in three draw controls and three ground balls.
Junior goalkeeper Elliot Gilbert (Bedford, N.Y./Deerfield Academy) saw 55:43 of action, stopping eight shots and allowing six goals. She also had two caused turnovers and two ground balls. Senior Ellie Aburn (Towson, Md./Notre Dame Prep) played the final 4:27 in goal, allowing three goals.
Senior attacker Danika Wagener led the Bombers with three goals and one assist, while senior defender Reid Simoncini recorded a game-high 10 draw controls. Sophomore Mackenzie Schade played the first half in goal, allowing 15 scores with three saves. First-year Lillian Matz played the final 30 minutes, giving up three goals with three saves.
The Generals advance to the NCAA Regional Semifinal round of the tournament and will take on eighth-ranked Wesleyan at Gettysburg College on Saturday with the game to be announced.
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