Friday Wrap: Upsets Galore, Conference Tournament Craziness Ensues

PHOTO COURTESY OF NOTRE DAME ATHLETICS


What would a Division I women’s lacrosse slate be without a few upsets? That’s been the name of the game this season.

Friday night’s 10-game schedule featured four major upsets — three in conference tournament action and one as a final regular-season tuneup. Here’s what went down.

NOTRE DAME BLASTS DUKE

One of the more unpredictable teams on a game-by-game basis this spring, Notre Dame did more than just show up in the ACC quarterfinals on Friday. The Irish bolstered what appeared to be a shaky NCAA tournament resume.

Madison Ahern had five goals, Kasey Choma and Maddie Howe each had four and Jackie Wolak had two goals and six assists as the Irish blasted Duke 19-11. The Irish led 16-6 after three quarters. They play top-ranked North Carolina on Sunday in the conference semifinals.

Duke, despite an early exit in the conference tournament, has one of the best wins on the board when it comes to earning an at-large bid, a big win over Boston College earlier this month.

Notre Dame, which has losses to Vanderbilt and Virginia Tech, led 8-2 after the first quarter Friday afternoon. About one month after losing to Duke 15-12, the Irish looked like a completely different offense.

They also did a phenomenal job against national draw leader Maddie Jenner, holding her to just seven draw controls. As a team, Notre Dame held a 19-15 advantage in the circle.

VIRGINIA EARNS CRUCIAL WIN

Virginia entered Friday’s ACC quarterfinal against Syracuse as the underdog. The Cavaliers were 0-7 against teams in the RPI Top 12. The only way for UVA to stay eligible for the NCAA tournament was to earn a win.

Cue the underdog story.

Rachel Clark scored six times and Ashlyn McGovern added four, while Morgan Schwab had three goals and four assists in Virginia’s 18-14 upset win over Syracuse, last year’s NCAA runner up.

A back-and-forth first half ended with UVA up 9-8, and Syracuse took an 11-10 lead with 7:23 left to play on Megan Carney’s goal. But that sparked a 5-0 Virginia run that ultimately proved the difference. McGovern’s assist to Schwab with 13:27 left to play put the Cavaliers ahead 15-11.

Syracuse goalies combined to make one save in the game, and the five saves made by Virginia’s Ashley Vernon proved massive.

ATLANTIC 10 CHAMPIONSHIP MATCHUP SET

Saint Joseph’s brought a four-goal lead into halftime and held off the second-seeded Richmond Spiders to advance to Sunday’s Atlantic 10 championship game against top-seeded UMass.

The Hawks never trailed and took their biggest lead at 7-2 after Lauren Figura scored one of her five goals with 4:41 left in the first half. The Hawks went into the break with an 8-4 lead on another strike from Figura.

Richmond opened the second half on a 4-1 run, and Kendall Duffy closed the deficit to 9-8 with 10:37 to play. But Figura was there to lift the Hawks back up, scoring what proved to be the game-winner less than a minute later.

In the other semifinal, UMass responded to a game-opening goal from Davidson by scoring the next six tallies in an 11-8 win. UMass was shut out in the final quarter, a period in which Davidson scored three times to narrow the gap.

Sunday’s Atlantic 10 championship game will be played at 12 p.m. Eastern on ESPN+.







GEORGETOWN STUNS UCONN

Two separate five-goal runs in the second-half completely stunned No. 16 UConn, as Georgetown walloped the Huskies in a 22-12 win in Washington, D.C.

Ali Diamond had two goals and six assists, Mary Pagano had five goals and one assist and Erin Bakes had four goals. Jordyn Sabourin, Tatum Geist and Emma Gebhardt each had a hat trick. LizaBanks Campagna secured 12 draws.

The Hoyas (8-8) went into halftime with a 12-8 lead and led 12-9 after Sydney Watson (four goals) opened the scoring in the second half. That sparked the first 5-0 Georgetown run.

Kate Shaffer and Morgan Carter scored consecutive goals to break that streak, but Georgetown then went on another 5-0 spurt for a 22-11 lead.

NOTABLE

  • Top-ranked North Carolina stayed perfect with a 15-6 defeat of Pitt, effectively ending the Panthers’ first season as an NCAA team. Scottie Rose Growney had five goals and Sam Geiersbach had four in the win. Paulina DiFatta made 18 saves for Pitt, giving her an ACC tournament record 37 in the two games Pitt played.

  • Virginia Tech hung in there against No. 2 Boston College, but the Eagles ultimately earned a hard-fought 19-13 win. Caitlynn Mossman had five goals, but it was Jenn Medjid and Mckenna Davis who both produced six points (both had three goals and three assists). Charlotte North had two goals and seven draw controls.

  • Kathleen Sullivan had four goals and four assists, and Julia Gorajek had four goals and one assists as Army topped Lafayette 20-2. Lacey Bartholomay made six saves.

HOW THE NIKE/USA LACROSSE TOP 20 FARED

No. 1 North Carolina defeated Pitt 15-6
No. 2 Boston College defeated Virginia Tech 19-13
Notre Dame defeated No. 6 Duke 19-11
Georgetown defeated No. 16 UConn 22-12
No. 17 UMass defeated Davidson 11-8
No. 18 Virginia defeated No. 5 Syracuse 18-14
Saint Joseph’s defeated No. 20 Richmond 10-9

FULL SCOREBOARD

American 16, Boston U 12
Army 20, Lafayette 2
No. 2 Boston College 19, Virginia Tech 13
Georgetown 22, No. 16 UConn 12
Holy Cross 19, Bucknell 9
No. 1 North Carolina 15, Pitt 6
Notre Dame 19, No. 6 Duke 11
Saint Joseph’s 10, No. 20 Richmond 9
No. 17 UMass 11, Davidson 8
No. 18 Virginia 18, No. 5 Syracuse 14

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