Clipped Wings: TCNJ Rolls Past No. 1 Gulls
from press release
EWING, N.J. - A slight change at the half paid huge dividends for The College of New Jersey women's lacrosse team as the Lions stormed back from a three-goal deficit to knock off top-ranked Salisbury University 16-12 on Saturday.
The win kept the fifth-ranked Lions undefeated on the season at 9-0 and was the team's first win over the Sea Gulls in their last three attempts.
The Sea Gulls (13-1) led 9-6 at the half and were able to build that lead thanks to an 11-5 advantage in draw controls.
At the start of the second half, head coach Sharon Pfluger changed up her personnel on the draw controls and the Lions fared much better as the teams each won seven in that half. It was what TCNJ did when they had possession that turned the game around in the final 30 minutes.
After junior Ali Jaeger (Hampton, NJ/North Hunterdon) scored a free-position shot 47 seconds into the new period, the Sea Gulls regained that three-goal cushion as Beth Rhodey (Fallstonb, MD/Notre Dame Prep) scored on an assist from Kim Cudmore (Bel Air, MD/Bel Air).That goal came with just 1:32 expired in the half and turned out to be Salisbury's last goal until there was just over a minute remaining in the game.
Sophomore Leigh Mitchell (Mt. Laurel, NJ/Lenape) got the Lions to within a goal with back-to-back tallies before Jaeger fired a sidearm laser into the goal on a free-position knotting the game at 10-10.
Senior Lisa Seldeen (Wayne, NJ/Wayne Valley) gave TCNJ the lead for good with 20:39 left in the half and Notos followed that up with consecutive goals that came 10 minutes apart extending the lead to 13-10.
Jaeger and Seldeen then tacked on goals while the Salisbury goalie had vacated the net in pursuit of creating a turnover as the Lions capped their impressive run of eight straight goals.
The Lions added another empty-netter, while Salisbury's Jessica Chmielewski (Woodbine, MD/South Carroll) added a pair of late scores making the final 16-12.
In the opening half, TCNJ claimed an early 2-0 before Salisbury countered with three straight goals. The Lions held their final lead of the half at 5-4, but the Sea Gulls used a five-goal run to lead 9-5 before Mitchell scored for TCNJ in the closing minutes making it a 9-6 game at the break.
Jaeger finished the game with five goals and a pair of assists with her opening goal of the game making her the 12th player in program history to surpass 200 career points. She has already moved into 11th place on that list as she currently has 206 points on 157 goals and 49 assists.
Mitchell finished with five goals and one assist, while Seldeen fired in four goals.
Rhodey and Aileen McCausland (Phoenix, MD/Hereford) each had hat tricks for Salisbury, while Cudmore dished out a game-high five assists.
TCNJ goalie Mary Waller (Bel Air, MD/C. Milton Wright) came up big in the second half as she made five of her eight saves in that period.
In goal for the Sea Gulls, junior Julie Ann Caufield (Drexel Hill, PA/Upper Darby) finished with seven saves.
The Lions have a quick turnaround as they return to New Jersey Athletic Conference play on Monday, April 12 heading to Ramapo College for a 4 p.m. game with the Roadrunners. Salisbury has an even shorter break taking on Marymount University tomorrow at 8 p.m.
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