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Maryland women’s lacrosse uses strong start to dispatch James Madison, 16-11

Four Maryland hat tricks lead the way for the Terps.

NCAA Lacrosse: Women's Semi Final-Maryland vs Syracuse Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

In a game that wasn’t as close as the score indicates, Maryland women’s lacrosse defeated James Madison 16-11. The No. 1-ranked Terps controlled the first 40 minutes of the game to remain undefeated.

The Maryland offensive explosion was lead by four hat tricks as Kali Hartshorn, Zoe Stukenberg, Caroline Steele and Megan Whittle each scored three goals. Kacie Longo added two goals herself, and Caroline Wannen and Jen Giles notched scores of their own.

In goal, Megan Taylor wasn’t as sharp as she normally is. Her six saves on 13 attempts is only the second time this season she had a save percentage under .500. With 15 minutes left, Emily Kift replaced Taylor and saved five shots on nine attempts.

James Madison switched goalkeepers mid-game as well, but the change didn’t succeed as they planned. In total, the Terps scored 16 goals on 27 shots.

The first half was dominated by the Terps. Steele recorded her hat trick in the first 20 minutes alone to lead Maryland’s goals. Maryland was in full control for the entire half on both ends of the field, going into halftime up 9-3.

James Madison was more competitive in the second half, ripping off a 3-0 run at one point. However, there was just too much Maryland offense as the Dukes struggled to keep up. Cathy Reese pulled most of her starters for the final 15 minutes, in which James Madison made a late run and scored four goals to cut the lead to five. The Dukes ended the game on a 7-3 run in the final 18 minutes.

Thanks to James Madison’s strong second half, the box score ended up pretty even. Maryland won draw controls 16-13 and turnovers 14-13, and the Terps kept James Madison scoreless on six free position shots.

Maryland returns home to face No. 3 Florida Wednesday afternoon.

Three Things to Know

  1. Maryland had a balanced offense. The Terps’ four hat tricks displayed the balance of their offense as they had seven total scorers. They didn’t have any issues with James Madison’s tough defense, and showed their ability to score at will.
  2. Even the best have an off day. Megan Taylor wasn’t at her very best, but that shouldn’t be alarming. In the span of a week, she missed a game because of an injury then had two games in four days. Still, it says something about Taylor that her sub-par performance would be solid for most other goalkeepers in the country.
  3. Another day, another top-five matchup. When Florida comes to College Park next week, it will be the third top-five team Maryland faces this season. They are 2-0 and have outscored their opponents 30-17 in those games.