Women's Lacrosse Claims Share of First A-10 Regular-Season Title
April 29, 2007
WASHINGTON, DC - Junior Kristin Karcsh tallied five second-half goals to lead the George Washington women's lacrosse team to a come-from-behind 12-11 victory over Saint Bonaventure at Mount Vernon Field on Sunday and a share of the program's first Atlantic 10 regular-season crown.
GW improves to 10-6 overall, 6-1 in the A-10, and splits the conference regular-season title with Richmond, which beat Duquesne 12-9 on Sunday to finish at 6-1 in league play. The Spiders are the No. 1-seed for next week's A-10 Championship tournament, hosted by Temple, by virtue of their 10-7 win over the Colonials on April 1. GW is the No. 2-seed and will face No. 3-seed St. Bonaventure on Friday, May 4, at 3:30 pm.
"The team's very excited with today's win and the chance to play in the A-10 tournament," said third-year head coach Chrissy Lombard-Adair. "We really picked up our play midway through the first half and figured out how to play St. Bonaventure; they were a really good test. Despite some key injuries, we've had a lot of players step up late in the season to help us get into the postseason."
After trading unassisted goals to start the game, St. Bonaventure ran off three unanswered tallies, two by leading scorer Katelyn Faas, to take a 4-1 lead midway through the first half.
GW regrouped after a timeout, scored three consecutive goals of its own and held SBU without a goal the rest of the half to enter halftime knotted at 4-4. Senior Kristina Harvey converted a pass from junior Lindsay Melvin at the 7:05 mark and junior Laura Wunk wheeled on a transition dish from Karcsh just 16 seconds later to pull within 4-3. Sophomore Katherine Sampson tied it at 4-4 on an unassisted tally 33 seconds before the intermission.
St. Bonaventure (8-6, 5-2 A-10) broke a 20:30 scoring drought on Patty Nessle's free-position goal at the 27:17 mark of the second half for a 5-4 lead. That goal opened the floodgates as both teams' combined for 14 goals over the final 24 minutes.
Melvin took a dish from Karsch to even the game at 5-5, but Bonnies' midfielder Stephanie Jordan scored consecutive goals on assists from Brenna Houghton to assume a 7-5 advantage with 22:40 left.
Karcsh single-handedly picked St. Bonaventure's defense apart for the next three minutes, netting a pair of unassisted goals and a free-position tally to give GW its first lead of the game, 8-7, with 19:47 to play.
SBU regained a one-goal cushion at 9-8 on goals by Kimberly Ross and Faas, but the Colonials responded with another 3-0 run to grab their first two-goal lead of the afternoon. Freshman Taylor Donohue started the rally with a nifty one-touch finish on a long pass from Harvey at the 13:08 mark. Karcsh netted her team-leading 40th goal of the season with 9:50 left to put GW back on top, 10-9. Sampson converted a transition goal just over two minutes later to make it 11-9.
Faas and Houghton forced the seventh tie of the game with back-to-back goals, but Karcsh wasn't to be denied. The tri-captain won a free-position attempt and, after having her initial shot saved, batted in the loose-ball rebound for the game-winner with 2:54 remaining.
St. Bonaventure had three chances to set-up an offensive set in the final minutes, but caused turnovers by sophomore Katie Lilly and Sampson kept the Bonnies from seriously threatening.
Karcsh finished with seven points on five goals and two assists and is now tied for fourth all-time at GW with 116 career points. Harvey had three points on two goals and an assist, Sampson added two goals and Melvin posted two points on a goal and an assist. Melvin also won a team-high four draw controls, with Lilly adding three draws and three caused turnovers.
Faas led St. Bonaventure with five points on four goals and an assist. Eboni Preston made 10 saves in 60 minutes in the cage.
GW led in shots (32-19), ground balls (15-14) and draws (14-11).
The Colonials won a program-record six consecutive league games to post their best A-10 record in school history.