The Women’s NCAA DI semifinals took place on May 27th at Talen Energy Stadium with 7,906 (the 10th largest crowd in women’s lacrosse history) people in attendance on Friday. The first game was full of excitement with many up and down moments for both teams while the second of the day was smooth for one, it was very frustrating for the other. Before we start talking about the Championship match up though lets take an in-depth look at how both games went down.
Photo Credit: Penn State Athletics
Penn State vs #3 North Carolina
At first, this game looked like it might get out of hand early with UNC tallying three quick goals. The Nittany Lions wouldn’t go down that easy though and tied the game at three a piece. After Penn State tied the game, they scored the next two to take a 5-3 lead. The game would be back and forth for much of the contest until a four goal run by the Tar Heels gave them a 12-7 advantage with 14:46 left in the contest. Penn State didn’t go away and had a four goal run of their own to get the game within one point again with 7:12 left. UNC would end up gaining possession of the ball and killing a majority of the clock on offense to secure the 12-11 victory to move on the ship!
Check out the highlights from the game below!
With the loss, Penn State is now 21-20 in NCAA Tournament games. They finished the season with a 14-7 record. Although their season is over the Nittany Lions definitely didn’t disappoint. This was their 10th appearance in the semifinals and first since 1999. They were also the only new team in the Final Four this year and proved they belonged.
Senior Madison Cyr became the 12th Nittany Lion to reach 200 career points. She finished with 202 and tied her sister Mackenzie for ninth overall and 156 career goals got her 4th overall in school history. Madison had a great senior season as well scoring a team-best 59 goals and 83 points. Senior Jenna Mosketti’s hat trick on Friday doubling her tournament goals and ending with 6 total. Junior Steph Lazo finished the season leading the team in assists with 37 and finished second in points with 71.
Photo Credit: North Carolina Athletics
University of North Carolina
The Tar Heels are on a sixteen game winning streak and have won 19 games this year, both the longest in school history. They are now 7-2 in one goal games and won the last seven. They will now play in the National Championship for three out of the last four years.
Seven players on the current roster were also apart of the 2013 Women’s NCAA National Championship team and five of them played in the game that was also against Maryland. Heading into the Championship multiple players for UNC are trying to continue their point streaks with Marie McCool at 31 and Sammy Jo Tracy at 21.
Photo Credit: Syracuse Athletics
#4 Syracuse vs #1 Maryland
This was the 4th straight year these two teams met in the Women’s NCAA Final Four and the previous three were very close. Maryland began the scoring with a goal in the first minute of play but Syracuse netted their own only a minute later. Then things began to go south for the Orange. Maryland went on a five goal run and the score was 6-1 with eighteen minutes left in the first half. Syracuse stopped the bleeding momentarily and tallied their second goal only to allow another four goal surge by the Terps. At halftime the score was 10-3 and didn’t get better. Maryland continued to score relentlessly in the second half and the game ended with a final score of 19-9.
Maryland is now 20-1 all time against Syracuse.
This was a very frustrating game for the Orange as they allowed the most goals, 19, they have given up in a game since 2013. The ten first half goals were also the most given up by Syracuse this season. In terms of offense, the three first half goals tied their worst production of the season as well. The Orange finished the game with only seven ground balls.
Although the game didn’t go the way the Orange wanted and their season is over, multiple players for the Orange had tremendous performances this season. Senior Kayla Treanor set an NCAA record during the game by controlling 11 draws today and ending her career with 217 all time. She also finished 4th all time for points in NCAA history with 393 and sixth in goals with 260. She holds the record for goals at Syracuse and is second in points as well as fourth in assists with 133.
Photo Credit: Maryland Athletics
The Terps are red hot this season and have expected nothing less than the National Championship all season. They are on a twenty-six game win streak that dates all the way back to last season and have appeared in eight straight Final Fours. Not only that, they will be in the ship for their fourth straight year. They lost in to UNC by one in 2013 and were National Champs in 2014 and 2015.
The Terrapins have the most potent offense in the league and have scored in double digits in 21 of 22 games. In the game they didn’t reach ten goals, they beat UNC 8-7.
Taylor Cummings became the third player in history to surpass 500 career draw controls. She is also 10th in Terps history for most ground balls in a season with 61 and second in single season draw control with 139. With a goal in second half, Cummings moved into second place in career points with 322. Her 228 goals put her tied at 3rd for now in school history as well. Megan Whittle has 73 goals this season and is in 4th place in Terps history.
Women’s NCAA Lacrosse Championship Preview
And now there are only two teams remaining. After Friday’s games, the Women’s NCAA Division I Championship is set to be a match up between a couple of power houses. Including this match up on Sunday, the two teams will have faced each other in three out of the last four championships. Both teams will be looking to gain the 2-1 edge against each other in recent championship games. North Carolina is looking for revenge after being the runner-ups last year as wel. Maryland isn’t just going for another National Championship, but rather for the first 3-peat ever in DI lacrosse. The previous championships were both decided by one goal. This game is going to be exciting and intense. When the clock hits zero on Sunday only one team will be raising the trophy. Who are you taking?