May 9, 2012

UCF Escapes, But Three Upsets on Opening Day at USL WCLA Championship

by Brian Logue | LaxMagazine.com

Junior defender Kaitlyn Lorenc helped Central Florida hold off BYU 11-10 in the opening round of the 2012 US Lacrosse WCLA National Championships, presented by Harrow Sports.

© Cecil Copeland

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – There were three upsets on the opening day of the 2012 US Lacrosse Women’s Collegiate Lacrosse Associates National Championships, presented by Harrow Sports, at El Pomar Sports Park, but No. 6 seed Central Florida was not one of the victims. The Knights held on for a dramatic 11-10 victory over No. 11 BYU to move onto the quarterfinals for the first time in program history.

Central Florida led by four late in the first half, but BYU cut it to 7-5 at the break, and eventually tied the game 9-9 with 10:46 remaining on Kristen Lund’s third goal of the game. Central Florida answered with back-to-back goals by Amber Jozwiak less than two minutes apart to take an 11-9 lead.

“She is so good moving off ball,” said Central Florida Head Coach Tom Hopkins. “She knows when to cut, when to get open, when to slide, those types of things. She’s just a brilliant reader of what the defense is looking at or not looking at.”

Jozwiak’s goals ended up holding up, but barely.  Brooke Smith scored an acrobatic goal with seven minutes to play to cut it to 11-10, and then UCF picked up two cards, giving the Cougars a brief two-player advantage with just under four minutes to play. UCF was able to kill off the penalties, but BYU got one final chance. Lund made a beautiful move to create space for herself, but her shot with eight seconds remaining went just over the top of the crossbar and UCF wrapped up the victory.

“I thought we fought through a lot of adversity,” said Hopkins. “Heavy feet, we noticed the altitude quite a bit. Our defense got really tired.”

Central Florida won’t get much time to rest up. They’ll meet No. 3 seed Michigan in a quarterfinal game on Thursday morning at 10 a.m. Michigan jumped out to an early 6-1 and cruised to a 17-7 victory over Virginia Club. Julianne Patterson had a big game for the Wolverines, netting five goals and two assists. Katie Mezwa and Ani Shekerjian each had three goals as well. Lucy Scholz had a goal and an assist for Virginia.

Some other top-seeded teams weren’t as fortunate as Central Florida. No. 5 seed Colorado, No. 7 seed Texas and No. 8 seed Chapman all fell in the opening round.

Colorado was bested by No. 12 seed Santa Clara in an 18-17 shootout. Colorado took a 17-15 lead with 13:13 left in the game on a goal by Avery Toothman, but then went scoreless down the stretch as the Broncos scored the games’ final three goals. Maggie Burke’s sixth goal of the game with 5:00 was the game-winner for Santa Clara. Burke finished with six goals and three assists and Maria Pestana added three goals and five assists. Alexa Jellison had four goals and an assist to pace Colorado.

Texas scored the first three goals of the second half to take a 9-6 lead on UC Davis Club, but then went scoreless for the final 24 minutes of the game as the Aggies scored eight straight goals to take a 14-9 decision. Laura Maffucci and Louise Marquino each had four goals for UC Davis and Aggie goalie Amy Corstorphine made nine saves, eight of them in the second half to help shut down the Longhorns. Clayton Crum led Texas with four goals.

Chapman started strong against UCLA, holding the Bruins scoreless for the first 17 plus minutes to take a 4-0 lead, but then went without a goal for the next 22 minutes as UCLA ripped off seven straight goals. Courtney Randall scored UCLA’s first goal to end the drought and finished with a game-high four. Morgan Oberstein added three goals and two assists. Lauren Gibson, Abbey Messmer and Audrey Benjamin all had two for Chapman.

The top four seeds did advance into the quarterfinals, led by top-seeded and two-time defending national champion Colorado State steamrolling Oregon Club 24-4. The Rams scored 17 first-half goals and were led by Hayley Bernstein with eight goals. Kelly Vagallis added four.

Second-seeded UCSB led just 10-8 early in the second half against Minnesota, but got things together for a 20-12 victory. Katie Mitchell scored six goals, five of them in the first half, to lead the Gauchos. Down 10-6 at the half, Minnesota scored the first two goals of the second half – both by Ashley Miller - to cut it to 10-8 with 25:39 remaining. UCSB answered with a 6-1 run over the next 11 minutes to put the game out of reach. Maegan Cruse added four goals for UCSB and Jeni Center made 11 saves. Cara Gulbronson led Minnesota with four goals and Marielle Sundbo made 14 saves.

No. 3 Michigan jumped out to an early 6-1 and cruised to a 17-7 victory over Virginia Club. Julianne Patterson had a big game for the Wolverines, netting five goals and two assists. Katie Mezwa and Ani Shekerjian each had three goals as well. Lucy Scholz had a goal and an assist for Virginia.

Fourth-seeded Florida Club got a scare from Penn State Club, but the Gators pulled away in the second half. Penn State led 5-4 in the half and took a 7-5 lead with 20:04 left in the game on a goal by Lindsay Kirlin, but Florida scored the final six goals of the game. Jenna Hildebrand, McKinley Carden and Anna DeGiovanni each scored twice for the Gators. Ellie Hanlon led the Penn State offense with two goals and an assist.

Division I First Round Scores from Wednesday, May 9
Colorado State 24, Oregon Club 4
UC Santa Barbara 20, Minnesota 12
Michigan 17, Virginia Club 7
Florida Club 11, Penn State Club 7
Santa Clara 18, Colorado 17
Central Florida 11, BYU 10
UC Davis Club 14, Texas 9
UCLA 13, Chapman 8

Schedule for Thursday, May 10 (All times Mountain)
10 am – DI Quarterfinal: No. 3 Michigan vs. No. 6 Central Florida
10 am – DI Quarterfinal: No. 2 UC Santa Barbara vs. No. 10 UC Davis Club
11 am – DI Quarterfinal: No. 4 Florida Club vs. No. 12 Santa Clara
11 am – DI Quarterfinal: No. 1 Colorado State vs. No. 9 UCLA
12:30 pm – DII Quarterfinal: No. 1 Towson Club vs. No. 8 Stanford Club
12:30 pm – DII Quarterfinal: No. 4 Westminster vs. No. 5 Oakland
1:30 pm – DI Consolation: No. 11 BYU vs. No. 14 Virginia Club
1:30 pm – DI Consolation: No. 7 Texas vs. No. 15 Minnesota
3 pm – DII Quarterfinal: No. 3 Rhode Island vs. No. 6 Utah
3 pm – DII Quarterfinal: No. 2 North Carolina Club vs. No. 7 Southern Methodist
5 pm – DI Consolation: No. 5 Colorado vs. No. 13 Penn State Club
5 pm – DI Consolation: No. 8 Chapman vs. No. 16 Oregon


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