Lacrosse (W)

Women's Lacrosse Upsets Wingate Behind Davis' 18 Saves


WINGATE, N.C. -- Catawba stunned Wingate, upsetting the third-seeded Bulldogs 13-12 in the opening round of the South Atlantic Conference Women's Lacrosse Tournament on Tuesday at Graham Gill Field.  The sixth-seeded Catawba Indians improve to 8-9 and advance to face second-seeded Lenoir-Rhyne in  Friday's semifinals at the Queens Sports Complex.  The Bulldogs end their season at 12-5.

The Lady Indians held off a Wingate charge over the final 10 minutes to claim the win.  The Bulldogs reeled off five straight goals to pull within one with 3:54 remaining.  Catawba kept Wingate from scoring the tying goal, blocking a free-position shot in the final seconds and helping cause a turnover as the horn sounded.

Bethany Davis (Salisbury, Md./Parkside) broke her own school record with 18 saves in goal for Catawba.  Megan Shortt (Kernersville, N.C./E. Forsyth) had four goals and Kirstyn Kruse (Sagamore Beach, Mass./Williston Northampton Prep) added three goals and an assist.  Meredith Jones (Barnesville, Md./St. John's Catholic) scored two goals with one assist, Nicolette Salay (Columbus, N.J./N. Burlington Regional) had two goals and Alyssa Corace (Mahopac, N.Y./Mahopac) a goal and three assists.

Shannon O'Neal led Wingate with three goals and three assists.  Emily Nosek collected three goals with one assist and Megan Amrein totaled two goals with two assists.  Arion Pierre made 10 saves for the Bulldogs.

The first half went back-and-forth between the teams, but Catawba trailed in the game only once.  After Jones put the Lady Indians up 1-0, Wingate took a 2-1 lead on goals from Amrein and O'Neal.  Jones scored to tie it and Shortt gave the lead back to Catawba at the 17:39 mark.

Wingate tied the game at three before goals from Kruse and Salay gave Catawba its first two-goal lead.  Kruse scored after two Bulldog goals then Brooke Wright (Kernersville, N.C./E. Forsyth) followed a tally Shortt with a break-away goal for an 8-6 edge.  Amrein closed the half on a goal for Wingate and the Lady Indians led 8-7 at the break.

Jones won four of the first six draw controls of the second half for Catawba and the Lady Indians kept possession for most of the first 20 minutes of the final half, methodically building a 13-7 edge.  Shortt scored early for a 9-7 lead then the Lady Indians put home four goals over a five minute span.  Shortt tallied at the 17:39 mark, Kruse at 16:43, Salay at 16:28 and Corace at 12:08 to make it 13-7.

Wingate was kept off the scoreboard for the first 21 minutes of the second half before Jaclyn Chiesa broke the long dry spell with 8:38 left.  O'Neal and Nosek scored 33 seconds apart to close the gap to 13-10 with 6:25 to go.  Paulina Dempsey kept the run going at the 5:46 mark and Nosek made it 13-12 with 3:54 remaining.

The Bulldogs had several possessions in the final three minutes, but could not get off a shot until the final seconds.  Chiesa drew a foul with eight seconds to play and her shot was blocked.  Wingate kept possession, but could not get off another attempt before the clock ran out.

Catawba faces Lenoir-Rhyne on Friday at 6:30 pm in a semifinal held at the Queens Sports Complex in Charlotte, N.C.

Box Score

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