Salisbury drops 6-5 decision to Washington & Lee

Salisbury drops 6-5 decision to Washington & Lee

LEXINGTON, Va. – The Salisbury University women's lacrosse team traveled to Lexington Va. Saturday, as they took on No. 12 Washington & Lee University, falling to the Generals in a hard fought battle, 6-5.

The Sea Gulls (2-2) offense wasted no time testing Washington & Lee (4-0) keeper Elliot Gilbert as they got in front early when Kristen Murphy found a cutting Alissa Talbert just outside the crease to open the scoring for the Sea Gulls, marking the sophomores third goal of the campaign.

Junior keeper Gianna Falcone earned her first save on the afternoon after denying a streaking Haley Tucker for the equalizer in the opening minutes of play. A minute later, Falcone's number was called on again as she came up big for the Gulls after her quick reaction got a piece of Hollis Tardy's shot, deflecting it off the pipe to keep Salisbury in the lead.
 
Falcone continued her hot-streak early racking up her third save in ten minutes after rejecting a point blank range from Hayley Soutter to keep the one goal cushion for the Sea Gulls.
  
The Sea Gull defensive line of Kacy Koolage, Kieran Kelleher, Kayla Miller and Margaret Lenz put on a defensive clinic for 19 minutes, but the Generals eventually broke through the lines as Soutter converted for her fifth of the season.
 
Salisbury responded in the 23rd minute when Wagner's sweeping run met sophomore Gabrielle Mongno in stride for the go ahead goal. The goal marked the Miller Place, New York native's fourth marker of the season.
  
Heading into the locker room, Washington & Lee outshot Salisbury 7-5, with Falcone notching three saves in the first 30 minutes compared to Gilbert's two. The Gulls defensive wall was pivotal in the halftime score line as they caused seven turnovers, collected six ground balls, and went 7-8 on clears in the first half of play.
  
The Sea Gull offense got off to another quick start in second half as junior Dana King converted her first of two goals on the day from a solo sweeping run from behind the net to bring the score level at three apiece. Kings second half tally marks the junior's eighth goal of the season. King notched her second goal of the afternoon with 23 minutes left to play in the game after collecting a laser pass from Wagner to bring the Sea Gulls within two with seven minutes left to play in the contest, 6-4.
  
With two minutes left in the second half the Generals held a two goal lead but the Sea Gulls were granted a stroke of luck when Washington & Lee keeper Elliot Gilbert's errant defensive clear fell to a wide open Wagner just outside the eight foot line, who calmly collected the ground ball, sped around the stranded keeper for an open shot on goal to bring Salisbury within one, 6-5.
 
On the ensuing draw control saw senior midfielder Gabbi Nieves collect the loose ball, sending the Sea Gulls into the offensive third looking for the tying goal with less than 90 seconds in the game. After working around the General's defense, the Gulls best opportunity to tie the game came off another sweeping run from King but her shot just missed the mark ricocheting off the pipe leaving the gulls down one with just over a minute to play.
  
With 30 seconds left on the clock, the Gull defense came up clutch again causing a turnover in their own defensive third and sent a last ditch effort down field to give Salisbury one last shot to level the score. After a Coach Jim Nestor time out, time expired at Watt Field as the Gulls final shot missed its mark, leaving Salisbury 2-2 on the season.
  
The Sea Gull back line of Miller, Koolage, Kelleher and Lenz played a hard fought 60 minutes allowing only 10 shots on goal, one free position attempt, and went 13-for-14 on defensive clears.
Falcone got the start in the net for the Sea Gulls, playing all 60 minutes and earning four saves on the day.
  
Salisbury returns to action this Wednesday, March 8, as they continue their road march against Rowan University. That game is set to begin at 4 p.m.

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