Shepherd Lacrosse Loses Opener at Home

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The Lakers' defense forced the Rams to stay outside for much of the game.

The Rams (0-2) lost in their home opener Saturday afternoon to the Lakers (1-0) of Mercyhurst by a 16-5 margin.

Early on, the Rams were with the favored Lakers every step of the way. Carly Zimmerman and Grace Lawson had two goals in the first five minutes of action for the Lakers.

Junior midfielder Courtney Matthews of the Rams scored a nice goal off of an assist from freshman attacker Lillian Funke. Senior attacker Brook Hunley also gave the Lakers headaches early with an unassisted goal of her own that led to a 2-2 score early on.

As the first half wore on though, the Rams could not stop the potent and lethal attack the Lakers were showcasing. Scoring the last seven goals of the half, the Lakers took a commanding 9-2 lead entering halftime and never looked back.

Zimmerman scored two of these goals, while Lawson scored another to add to her total.

With the seventh goal of the run being scored by Taylor Izzo off of an assist by Lacey Netti, the Rams appeared to lose any confidence they gained early on.

Anthony Bracken/The Picket
The Lakers showed a higher-level of intensity on defense than the Rams.

This remarkable scoring run would augment to 10-0 when Lawson sent home another goal. Teammate Kristin Anderson recorded the first two goals of the half, now making the Lakers’ lead 12-2.

While the Lakers seemed to get inside the Rams’ defense at will, they made lives difficult for the Rams on the offensive end. Time after time when the Rams moved the ball down field, terrific defensive play and effort kept the Rams from getting inside for an easy shot.

The Rams let a number of opportunities slip through their fingertips, but did cash in on some.

Matthews scored her second goal of the game off of an excellent feed by senior midfielder Haley Price.

Price would go on to make the scoring margin respectable, slamming home two more unassisted goals of her own in the final minutes.

These late scoring efforts though were too little too late as it turned out.

Facing heavy pressure all day long, junior goalkeeper Casey Hickman earned six saves on the afternoon. Gabby Gravino posted 11 saves, with more help around her.

Anthony Bracken/The Picket
The Rams always seemed to be a step behind the Lakers on both sides of the ball.

With 25 shots coming at her seemingly non-stop, Hickman had little time and support to give her best performance.

Her teammates were simply beaten to the ball, and it cost them big time.

The Lakers won the ground ball department 16-13. They also went 17-for-20 in clears, while the Rams went 13-for-16.

The Rams will look for their first win of the season when they take on Millersville at 4 p.m. Tuesday afternoon.

 

Anthony Bracken is the Sports Editor of The Picket. He can be reached at abrack02@rams.shepherd.edu