March 10, 2008

W. Lacrosse Tames Lions, Still Undefeated

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The women’s lacrosse team stayed perfect on the young season by defeating Columbia in its first Ivy League game, 16-2, on Sunday afternoon. The Red dominated the contest on the strength of its defense; Cornell caused 12 turnovers and only allowed nine shots on goal.
“The whole defense really rose to the occasion and played super well together,” said head coach Jenny Graap ‘86. “A lot of aggressive big checks and really good marking; overall it was a great team effort on the defense. To hold anyone to just two goals takes a team effort and the whole defensive unit did a really good job.”
The Red’s (3-0, 1-0 Ivy) defense also kept Columbia’s top-3 scorers — junior attacker Holly Glynn, senior midfielder Marisa Marcellino, and sophomore attacker Brittany Shannon — scoreless for the contest.
“We were aware of their leading scorers and what not,” Graap said. “But I think the game plan for us was more to just support each other and look for double teaming opportunities. We weren’t as focused on markups and things like that; more a team effort”
Columbia scored just one goal in each period. The first was on a free position by sophomore attacker Frances Callaghan. The Lions’ last goal came from freshman midfielder Lizzie Lee off of an assist from Glynn. Glynn also collected three draw controls, a turnover and two ground balls. While Columbia junior goalkeeper Emma Mintz’s stats for the game may not look gaudy — she allowed sixteen goals — Mintz did record ten saves, including a few eye-openers.[img_assist|nid=28678|title=A wintery mix|desc=Senior attacker Charlotte Schmidlapp (23) skirmishes with a Hofstra defender at Schoellkopff Field on March 7. The game was postponed in the second half due to weather.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
“She’s obviously a talented keeper,” Graap said. “For us it’s always a challenge to face a skilled goalkeeper. I thought she did a really nice job out there. She stopped a lot of point-blank breakaway opportunities for us. I thought she was a real difference-maker — very nice play.”
As per usual for this season, the Red excelled on offense as well as defense. Cornell is averaging 14 goals per game on the young 2008 season, an improvement from its 11.6 goals per game over during the 2007 season.
“It’s been a process with all the players,” Graap said. “Just gaining experience and gaining confidence and working on shooting skills and stick skills.”
The offense was a team effort — 11 players found the back of the net for the Red, and 12 players registered a point. The Red amassed 34 shots on goal, compared to just nine by the Lions.
Senior captain Charlotte Schmidlapp had four points on three assists and a goal, and seniors Courtney Farrell and Katherine Simmons as well as freshman Libby Johnson all had two goals and one assist. Junior attacker Halsey Diakow stormed off the bench to score a career-best three points with one goal and two assists.
“She looked good,” Graap said of Diakow’s play. “She has a great eye on the attacking end. I think this is her year to really step up and so far she’s shown us that she’s improved a lot and she’s a great player.”