LEXINGTON, Va. – The second-ranked Washington and Lee women’s lacrosse team trailed 11-4 at the half and simply couldn’t make up the difference in falling to 11th-ranked Ithaca by a score of 16-11 in the third round of the NCAA Tournament held at Wilson Field on Saturday evening.
With the game tied 2-2 in the opening 10 minutes of the contest, the Bombers (14-1) seized control with a five-goal run that gave them a 7-2 advantage at the 13:10 mark of the first half. Senior midfielder Jacqui Hallack and senior attacker Madison Boutureira scored two goals each for Ithaca during the run.
W&L (14-1) responded with goals by first-year attacker Hanna Bishop (Bronxville, N.Y. / Bronxville) and senior midfielder Kit McNiff (Chatham, N.J. / Chatham) just 2:42 apart to cut it to 7-4 with 8:59 left in the half. However, Ithaca closed the half with another four-goal spurt to assume the seven-goal lead (11-4) at the break.
The Generals regrouped at the intermission and climbed back to within four goals with a three-goal run that made it an 11-7 game with 24:58 remaining. Sophomore midfielder Jenny Lisovicz (Glen Ridge, N.J. / Glen Ridge) opened the second-half scoring with a goal off an assist by senior attacker Landon Shelley (Charlotte, N.C. / Myers Park) just 1:17 into the frame. Shelley then fed McNiff for another goal just 22 seconds later, and Bishop scored unassisted at 24:58.
W&L continued to threaten, but Ithaca senior goalkeeper Mackenzie Schade wrestled momentum back when she saved a free-position shot by junior attacker Katherine Faria (Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y. / Cold Spring Harbor) at 23:04. Hallack then scored less than a minute later and senior attacker Alexa Ritchie added another just 1:02 after the Hallack goal to push the lead back to 13-7 with 20:13 left.
The Generals kept mounting pressure on the Bombers and scored four of the game’s next five goals to cut its deficit to just 14-11 with 5:42 remaining. Sophomore attacker Allie Schwab (Bryn Mawr, Pa. / Harriton) scored three goals during the run, while Bishop scored the other. The final Schwab goal at 5:42 was assisted by Shelley, which was her 50th assist of the season and represented her 200th career point.
Ithaca won the ensuing draw control and forced the Generals to extend the defense in hopes of generating a turnover. The Bombers took advantage, scoring two more goals in empty-net situations for the final margin.
W&L held a 35-28 advantage in shots and a 17-12 edge in ground balls. Ithaca claimed 19 of the 29 draw controls in the contest, including 12-of-16 in the first half, which also helped them build the halftime advantage.
Bishop scored four goals and Schwab had three goals and one assist to lead the W&L offense. Shelley finished with three assists, upping her program record to 141 career helpers. She also posted 59 goals for her 200 career points, which rank fifth all-time.
McNiff scored two goals and had a team-high five draw controls, and Faria added one goal and one assist. Lisovicz tallied one goal, four ground balls, four draw controls and two caused turnovers, while first-year Caroline Kranich (State College, Pa. / Mercersburg Academy) played all 60 minutes in goal and registered seven saves.
Hallack paced the Bombers with four goals, one assist and a game-high nine draw controls. Boutureira chipped in three goals and Schade stopped 16 shots in goal.
Ithaca advances to play Salisbury in the quarterfinals on Sunday at 6:00 pm. Washington and Lee’s season ends with a 14-1 overall record.