It still has not come completely full circle for the Shippensburg University women’s lacrosse team.
One half they keep it neck-and-neck. The next, the opposition carries the momentum the rest of the way through, failing to piece together a full 60 minutes.
SU’s week two contests were no exception of that as the Raiders fell in a blowout to West Chester University 20-6 Wednesday and lost a tighter matchup Saturday versus Shepherd University 13-9.
Entering Game 1, SU knew they faced a gritty competitor in West Chester (2-0, 2-0 PSAC East) as the Golden Rams held the five spot in the national rankings.
The Golden Rams routed the Raiders (0-4, 0-3 PSAC East) in nearly every category, capturing advantages in shots on goal (45-20), ground balls (21-11), caused turnovers (8-4) and free-position shots (11-5).
WCU opened the scoring with a quick burst of a 2-0 run. Sophomore Gabby Savarino etched the Raiders in the scoring column with a goal at the 26:22 mark, closing the deficit to one. From there, the Golden Rams nailed shot after shot after shot, sparking a 5-0 run, manufacturing a 7-1 margin.
Savarino thwarted the WCU goal streak with her second score of the day, with 5:57 remaining in the opening frame. However, West Chester refused to end the first half quietly, puzzling together another 5-0 burst, securing the first stanza with 12-2 lead.
Coming out of the break, it took all but a minute for the Golden Rams to find the back of the net once more. Savarino responded with another shot into the twine, netting her first hat trick of the season and the fifth of her career. Following Savarino’s goal, junior Alana Cardaci tallied one of her own, bringing the score to 13-4.
Freshman Bailey Krahl netted another goal a minute later, the first of her SU career. But it was another WCU run (6-0) in the final 20 minutes that stifled any slim chances of a Raider comeback. Sophomore Hannah Seifried rounded out the scoring, nailing her only goal, with 29 seconds remaining.
Despite allowing 20 goals, freshman goalkeeper Ally Weneta totaled a career-high 15 saves, while garnering the loss.
Junior Jena MacDonald continued to add to her growing resume of assists (62), as she contributed to Cardaci’s goal. Seifried led SU in draw controls (6) and ground balls (3). She also notched an assist on the evening.
Saturday’s continuation of Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Eastern Division play for the Raiders displayed a more even match, with SU still seeing a defeat.
This time around, the Raiders got the scoring rolling out of the gate. Freshman Abby Seasock fired one into the net a fraction over 30 seconds in, her second of the season. The Rams countered in fashion with something the Raiders were all too familiar with during the week — a 5-0 run.
SU jetted right back in the game with a 4-0 run of its own. Four different Raiders contributed to the SU resurgence, including Savarino, Cardaci and Krahl. Freshman Kayla Jones got into the mix, tallying her first collegiate goal and evened the score at five going into the break.
The Rams wasted no time at the beginning of the second half, breaking into another 5-0 run, with Shepherd’s Katherine Campbell and Sidney Kelly trading two goals apiece. Jones eventually stopped the bleeding at 18:32, notching her second score on the day.
Shepherd (2-1, 2-1 PSAC East) tallied two more goals before Seifried found the nylon on two occasions, pushing her goal total to 10 on the season. Savarino completed the game’s scoring with her second goal, ending the contest in a 13-9 Rams’ advantage.
Weneta posted 12 goals allowed and five saves in 48 minutes of action. Redshirt-sophomore KiKi Brasher relieved Weneta in the remaining 12 minutes, allowing one goal.
Sophomore Sydney Costanza paced the Raiders with four ground balls to go along with one assist. Savarino totaled a team-high seven draw controls and Krahl a team-best two assists.
The Raiders take to the road Tuesday and Saturday for the team’s first away contests. Tuesday they travel to Bloomsburg University to square off with the Huskies, while Saturday they match up against the Golden Bears of Kutztown University. Wednesday’s game is set to start at 2 p.m.