Penn State women pull off upset, 15-13. The #21 Penn State Lady Nittany Lions (2-0) showed to be unwelcoming hosts. They pulled off an early-season upset of the 7th Ranked, Maryland Terrapins (0-1) at Panzer Stadium on Monday afternoon.
A big first half made the difference in this one. The Lions outscored Maryland, 8-4. The home team put together a few runs to gain the advantage. It took 4:08 and Maryland was on the board first off a Grace Griffin (1g) tally but that seemed to wake Penn State up as they got markers from Kristin O’Neill (2g,2a), Maria Auth (2g) and Sophia Triadafils (2g,1a) off a pretty set up from Kate Nealon.
The outburst came in just 4:37 and Penn State seemed to find their happy place. Things simmered down for five minutes before Catie May (2g) cut into the lead. It took all of :26 for O’Neill to counter and reinstate the two-goal lead. Libby May (4g,2a) and another from Catie May off a nice assist from Libby, got things even at 4-4. The Lions went on their second run of the half with Lauren Craft (2g), Olivia Dirks (5g,1a), Auth, and on more from Craft closed the half with the aforementioned 8-4 score.
The Terps turned the tables to start the second half with a three-goal rally fueled by Brindi Griffin (2g), Shaylan Ahearn (1g). With 25:07 remaining, Hannah Leubecker (2g) set the stage for a wild finish. Triandafils stopped the run to push it to a 9-7 PSU lead. Maryland was not going away without a fight and Brindi Griffin with help from Libby May. May doing it herself and the squads were knotted up once again, 9-9.
Gretchen Gilmore (1g) followed by another Dirks tally, put PSU back in their usual two goal advantage. I guess you know what’s coming? Libby May with a pair :40 seconds apart put the teams in a familiar spot. It then turned into a “you score, we score” temperament.
Kara Nealon (1g,1) for the home team, Victoria Hensch (1g) countered but O’Neill found Dirks on the EMO before Hannah Leubecker answered to set up the final four minutes with a 13-13 score. Penn State found something left in the tank and got the advantage with 2:09 to play with Dirks notching the eventual game-winner. Dirks again hit rope with :44 to play after converting another O’Neill set up to close the books on the 15-13 upset.
Notes: The affair marked the first Penn State victory over Maryland since 2005. Penn State women pull off upset. More NCAA lacrosse action is here.