via UF press release – photo by Isabella Marley
The Gators topped the Commodores 22-9 to clinch at least a share of the American Athletic Conference regular season championship
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The ninth-ranked Florida lacrosse team got to hoist the American Athletic Conference regular season trophy after clinching at least a share of the championship with its 22-9 defeat of Vanderbilt on a rainy Sunday afternoon at Donald R. Dizney Stadium.
With the victory, the Gators have now won the regular season conference championship both of their years in the AAC and have now won 10 regular season crowns across three conferences (ALC: 2011, ’12, ’13, ’14; BIG EAST: 2015, ’16, ’17, ’18; AAC: 2019, ’21).
Florida has also now won 38-straight regular season conference games, dating back to the start of conference play in the 2016 season.
Due to weather in the area, the Gators honored their eight seniors and three student managers in Senior Day festivities after the victory. Eddy Shoop, Annie Wright, Kassidy Bresnahan, Grace Haus, Cara Trombetta, Shannon Kavanagh, Brianna Harris and Kaitlyn Dabkowski took part in the ceremony.
The Gators had eight different goal scorers on the afternoon, including a team-high seven from Kavanagh. With her first goal today, she tied the record for most consecutive games with a goal (40).
Haus, Bresnahan and Danielle Pavinelli each recorded a hat trick in the game, while Maggi Hall, Emily Heller and Harris each found the back of the cage twice. Paisley Eagan registered one goal of her own on the afternoon to round out Florida’s goal scorers.
Harris dished out a season-high four assists on the afternoon, while Bresnahan and Haus each posted two. Ashley Gonzalez, Hall and Kavanagh each recorded one helper in the game.
Florida once controlled the draw circle, coming up with 20-of-32 draw controls on the afternoon. Kavanagh posted a team-high 10, securing the program record for draw controls in a career as she passed Shannon Gilroy’s record of 303. Eagan and Harris each secured three draw controls, while Heller added two.
The defensive quartet of Trombetta, Dabkowski, Emma Wightman and Becky Browndorf held four of Vanderbilt’s top scorers to just 1-of-7 shooting and two assists in the game.
Dabkowski, Kavanagh and Trombetta led the way with two caused turnovers apiece, while Heller, Wightman and Kavanagh once again tallied a team-high three groundballs in the game.
Sarah Reznick saw all 60 minutes in the cage, coming up with nine saves for a .500 save percentage.
No. 9 Florida (11-2, 8-0 AAC)
Vanderbilt (11-4, 6-2 AAC)
How It Happened
- The Gators came into the game firing, scoring six-straight goals before forcing a Vanderbilt with just under eight minutes played.
- Shannon Kavanagh started the run with back-to-back goals exactly one minute apart, putting Florida up 2-0 less than 90 seconds in. That was followed by a free position goal from Paisley Eagan and then Kavanagh found the back of the cage for her 11th hat trick of the season to put the Gators up 4-0 just over six minutes into the first half.
- Just 28 seconds later, Kassidy Bresnahan netted her first of the day, followed by a Grace Haus free position conversion to give the Gators the 6-0 lead and force a Vanderbilt timeout.
- Out of that break, Danielle Pavinelli scored back-to-back goals to give Florida the 8-0 lead with 19:03 left to play in the first, but Vanderbilt followed with its first goal of the game to cut Florida’s lead to seven at 8-1.
- With just over 15 minutes left in the first, Maggi Hall found the back of the cage on a pass from Bresnahan, extending Florida’s lead back to eight goals.
- The Commodores then strung together a 2-0 run to pull within six at 9-3. Haus notched another free position conversion, followed by a Kavanagh unassisted goal to once again put the Gators up eight at 11-3.
- Vanderbilt closed out the half on a 3-0 run, but Florida was able to take the 11-6 lead into halftime.
- Coming out of the locker room, the Gators notched nine-straight goals to take the 20-6 lead with 12:25 left in the game. Harris got the run started, scoring less than two minutes out of the locker room to swing the momentum in Florida’s favor.
- Bresnahan followed with her second goal of the day to put the Gators up 13-6, then Haus, Hall and Danielle Pavinelli racked up a goal apiece within a three-minute span to give Florida the 10-goal lead and a running clock.
- With under 20 minutes to play, Kavanagh found the back of the cage on a pass from Haus for her fifth goal of the game and was quickly followed by a score from Emily Heller – her first of the day.
- Kavanagh continued to roll, grabbing her sixth goal with 16:13 left to put Florida up 19-6 and Bresnahan tallied her second hat trick of the season to close out the Florida run.
- The Commodores cut Florida’s lead to 12 at 20-8, but Heller and Kavanagh went back-to-back to once again give Florida the 14-goal lead. Vanderbilt scored in the final second of the game, but Florida was victorious 22-9 at The Diz.
Insight from O’Leary
On her thoughts from today’s game
- “Just really excited to come out with a victory today. Vanderbilt is a great team and they came out and played hard from the jump. I am very honored to be able to coach this senior class. They have done such an amazing job here over the course of their careers and I could not be more thrilled for them.”
- Bresnahan tied her career-high in points with five
- Kavanagh tied her career-high in points with eight
- The Gators clinched a share of the AAC Regular Season Championship, their 10th overall in just the 12-year history of the program
- Florida has now won 38-straight regular season conference games dating back to the start of the 2016 season
- With her two goals today, Brianna Harris has moved closer to becoming just the 14th Gator to score 100 career goals – she currently sits at 92
- With her 10 draw controls today, Shannon Kavanagh has now broken the program record for career draw controls, surpassing Shannon Gilroy’s previous mark of 303
- With her two groundballs today, Cara Trombetta inched closer to first in the record books. She currently sits at 181 and Haley Hicklen holds the record at 194
- Streaking: With her seven goals today, Shannon Kavanagh has now tied the program record for consecutive games with a goal at 40 (Shayna Pirreca)
- The Gators improve to 12-2 against Vanderbilt in the all-time series
- Florida moves to 7-1 against the Commodores in Gainesville, Fla.
- The Gators are now 115-5 (.958) against teams not ranked in the IWLCA Top-25 Pol
- Florida is now 103-19 (.844) in the confines of Donald R. Dizney Stadium
- When scoring at least 14 goals, the Gators are 144-2 (.986) in program history
- Streaking: Shannon Kavanagh’s 40 consecutive games with a point is the fourth-longest streak in program history
- Streaking: Sarah Reznick has tallied a groundball in 17-straight games, tied for the third-longest streak in program history
- Streaking: Brianna Harris has recorded a point in 33-straight games, the sixth-longest streak in program history
- The Gators head to Norfolk, Va. to take on the Old Dominion Monarchs for the final series of conference play
- Florida has to win just one of the two games to claim the regular season title outright
- UF and Old Dominion are meeting for the first time in program history, with this being the Monarchs first season in the AAC
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