April 29, 2003

Women's Lacrosse Upsets No. 15 Stanford

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The women’s lacrosse team defeated No. 15 Stanford (11-4), 12-9, yesterday on Schoellkopf Field to finish the season strong after Saturday’s heartbreaker at Yale. It was the 400th game in program history. With the victory, the Red (9-5) remains unbeaten against the Cardinal all-time, with a 5-0 series record.

"I’m really pleased with the effort," said head coach Jenny Graap ’86. "I felt that we were intense on ground balls, hustling, and it just seemed like we played with a lot of passion."

Stanford got on the board early, scoring 48 seconds into the game. However, the Red quickly responded and mounted an impressive run. Sophomore Lindsay Steinberg got the offense started for the Red, as she intercepted a pass in the offensive zone, and beat the lone defender back for the score. Senior Sarah Averson added a tally of her own soon after, as junior Jamie Quinn found Averson all alone in front of the net. Junior Kate Hirschfield put the laxers up by two, connecting on a shot right in front of the net.

After the Cardinal called timeout to try to regroup, the Red continued to add to its lead. Sophomore Julia Hughey connected on a pass from Steinberg, who added her second tally of the day soon after on a free position shot. Averson extended the lead to 6-1 after taking a pass from freshman Allison Schindler.

"Part of strategy against Stanford was to transition down quickly, move the ball quickly, and throw the feed quickly," Graap commented. "They play a zone defense, which is a little different defensive look, and we just wanted to attack them in transition when they were vulnerable and before they had time to set it up."

Stanford went on a run of its own, scoring the next three goals to cut the Cornell lead to 6-4 with 10 minutes to go in the first half. Steinberg answered right back, though, as she hit the back of the net with a shot through traffic. The Cardinal closed the gap again with 30 seconds left in the half.

In the opening minute of the second half, Stanford’s Sarah Bach cut the lead to 7-6, as she dropped a shot into the net from the left side while falling down. Steinberg added her fourth goal of the game four minutes later on a shot from the top of the arc, but Stanford connected on a free position shot to cut Cornell’s lead to one.

The Red never let the Cardinal get any closer, as it jumped ahead with a four-goal spurt in the middle of the half. Sophomore Annie Berkery started the run, causing a turnover while Stanford changed goalies. Both teams sprinted down field, and Schindler fed Steinberg for her fifth goal of the game before the new Stanford goalie could get settled.

Steinberg tallied her second assist of the day with 13 minutes left in the game, as she fed the ball to sophomore Kristin Smith, to give the Red a 10-7 lead.

"Steinberg … was not only good scoring goals, but she had assists today, and she was hustling in the ride, getting stick checks and tackling back on people," said Graap. "I really think this was one of the most outstanding games she’s played in her career."

Stanford gave the Red a scare in the closing minutes of the game, as it tacked on two more goals to bring the score to 12-9. The Red’s defense kept the game from getting any closer, as junior goalie Ashley Charron making some clutch saves late in the game.

"Stanford’s a great team and they never died, fighting right until the end. I think the defense did a good job under pressure." said Graap.

Charron finished the day with seven saves.

In addition to her career-high five goals and two assists, Steinberg scooped up a career-high six ground balls and caused two turnovers, while senior co-captain Rachel Friedman led the team with seven ground balls.

Archived article by Jonathan Auerbach