The women’s lacrosse team looks to push its winning streak to four games when it faces No. 16 Syracuse this evening at Schoellkopf field. The Orangewomen lead the all-time series 3-1, including a 9-7 victory over Cornell last April.
“They’re a feisty, aggressive team,” said head coach Jenny Graap ’86.
The Red has improved though; this year the team carries a No. 6 national ranking and an 8-1 overall record. That makes this game important for several reasons.
First, a victory over Syracuse would help Cornell solidify its poll position, and second, it can set the Red up for success this weekend against No. 8 Yale. The Bulldogs are currently tied with Cornell for second place in the Ivy League standings. Both teams have 4-1 Ivy records.
Last weekend the Red produced a pair of victories against Brown and Boston University.
On Friday in Providence, Cornell fought back from a 6-5 halftime deficit to beat the Bears 13-9. Sunday, against B.U., the Red won 11-8 after trailing 3-2 late in the first.
The weekend featured several notable performances.
On defense, senior goaltender Carrie Giancola made several key stops Friday to turn the tide in Cornell’s favor, and then blocked a season-high 14 shots Sunday, including nine in the second half.
Senior captain Lori Wohlschlegel led the Red’s offense with eleven points on the weekend, including five goals and six assists. The two games’ effort made Wohlschlegel Cornell’s career assists leader with 60.
And last, but certainly not least, senior Jaimee Reynolds won her third Ivy League Defensive Player of the Week award for her play in the Red’s two road victories. Reynolds is the only player in the league with three weekly awards.
Despite the individual efforts and the wins, the team wasn’t quite satisfied with its play over the weekend. Scrappy opponents and some bad luck kept the Red from an early lead against Brown, and on Sunday the team looked a little flat.
“We played well enough to win,” said Graap, “but not great.”
On Sunday in particular, the team didn’t quite play with as much passion as usual, she noted. Today she wants the team to find the fire it had against Princeton and Dartmouth.
“This game is a perfect game to get back into that intense, emotional type of play,” Graap said.
That’s what she will be looking for against Syracuse today and Yale over the weekend. The team’s goal is to improve every game.
“We want to continue to push our limits,” Graap said.
Syracuse comes off a 14-5 victory over the University of New Hampshire. However, the Orangewomen have lost two of their last three games. The defeats came at the hands of Rutgers and ninth-ranked Notre Dame, two teams Cornell defeated earlier in the season.
The team won’t be lulled into any sense of false security though, especially against a ranked team and with Yale waiting in the wings. Improvement is the name of the game for the women’s laxers.
Said Graap: “We haven’t played our best game yet.”
Archived article by Matt James