No. 5 USC Stops Stanford Surge For 10-9 Win Over No. 9 Cardinal|
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April 22, 2016
LOS ANGELES -- The fifth-ranked USC women's lacrosse team (16-0, 8-0 MPSF) held off a late comeback bid by No. 9 Stanford (12-3, 7-1) to secure a 10-9 win at the LA Memorial Coliseum on Friday, April 22. The victory kept the Women of Troy undefeated on the season and pushed the Trojans' win streak to 16 straight games. It also secured at least a share of USC's first-ever MPSF regular-season title and gives the Trojans the top seed in next weekend's MPSF tournament.
USC got its scoring from junior attacker Michaela Michael who finished with six points on four goals and two assists. It was Michael's 24th-career game with three goals or more. She also ran the center circle with eight draw controls to lead all players. Senior midfielder Amanda Johansen scored her 21st-career hat trick and picked up three draw controls to go with a caused turnover. The Trojans' three other goals came from junior attackers Kylie Drexel and Gabby McMahon and senior attacker Haleigh Dalmass. Drexel also had one of USC's four assists, a draw control, and a caused turnover.
The Trojans' defense was led by senior Courtney Tarleton, who had a pair of caused turnovers and a game-high four ground balls. Senior Kaitlyn Couture had three caused turnovers, a ground ball, and a draw control. In goal, sophomore Gussie Johns produced seven saves and picked up a pair of ground balls.
For the Cardinal, Elizabeth Cusick, Dillon Schoen, and Alex Poplawski each scored two goals apiece. Kelsey Murray and Anna Salemo had the other two Stanford goals. Cusick and Murray each had two assists. In goal, Allie DaCar had three saves but took the loss with 10 goals against her.
Stanford got on the board first as Cusick put one past Johns from the eight-meter arc at 28:18. It took the Trojans just under three minutes to respond as Michael dodged to her left to fire a shot past DaCar at 25:22. The goal by Michael sparked a 4-0 USC run through the next six minutes. Johansen scored unassisted and then Michael put two more on the board for a hat trick; her last off a pass from senior attacker Caroline deLyra. USC led, 4-1, with 18:40 to play in the first half, but the Cardinal trimmed that lead to a single goal on bell-ringers from Poplawski and Cusick.
USC held the slim one-goal lead for 10 minutes until it went on another 4-0 run to close the first half. Johansen scored at 3:29 and then Michael won the next draw and got the ball to McMahon who whipped it past DaCar just 10 seconds later. Michael then put her fourth goal on the board at the 2:17 mark before Drexel rolled the crease to score with just under a minute left. The final goal put the Trojans up by five, 8-3, heading into the break.
The Trojans picked up where they left off as the second half began. Johansen took a pass from Drexel to score for a 9-3 lead at 27:15 and then Michael hit Dalmass with a pass for the goal at 26:40. That was the last time USC would score though as the Trojans went through their longest scoring drought in a game this season. Murray scored at 18:17 to bring the Cardinal its fourth goal, and then Poplawski pushed for another to get Stanford within five at 10-5 with 16:30 left.
Schoen scored on a free-position shot at 11:34 before Salemo (8:07) and Maggie Nick (6:54) scored goals to extend the Cardinal run to 5-0. Trailing, 10-8, Stanford continued to press USC and forced enough turnovers to garner one more shot for Schoen who scored at 3:06. The Trojans did all they could to hold on to the ball, and got one final turnover out of Stanford with 37 seconds left to play to preserve the 10-9 win.
The Women of Troy host UC Davis (7-6, 5-3 MPSF) in their final regular-season home game at McAlister Field on Sunday (April 24) at noon PT. USC will honor its first-ever four-year senior class in pre-game ceremonies. For more information on the USC women's lacrosse team, please visit USCTrojans.com. Fans of the Women of Troy can follow the team on Instagram and on Twitter @USCTrojansLax.