via JU press release
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – For the first time in program history the Jacksonville University women’s lacrosse team (12-1) is moving on to the second round of the NCAA Tournament following an impressive dismissal of the Vanderbilt Commodores (12-7), 20-12, at Dizney Stadium in Gainesville.
“Tonight was a great team effort,” head coach Mindy McCord said. “I think our defense played really well tonight, we won several draw controls and did several things well. Our bench was loud and several players stepped up and scored when we needed them to.”
Three minutes into the first half, Jenny Kinsey scored her 41st goal of the season to give the Dolphins a quick 1-0 lead. The Commodores responded with two goals in the next ten minutes to switch the lead in their favor, 2-1.
At the 17:37 mark, Mackenzie Boyle scored off an assist from Kinsey to tie the game. Vanderbilt continued to push the Dolphins defense as three different Commodores scored to put the black side on top, 5-2. Jacksonville then closed out the first half, in vintage fashion, by going on a 6-0 scoring run.
Kinsey opened the run after scoring on a free position shot to cut the Commodores lead to 5-3, followed by back-to-back free position shots from Sarah Elms and Lauren Phillips. The Dolphins were back in the game with the score tied at five.
Earning her eighth hat trick of the season, Kinsey gave JU the lead for the second time of the half, 6-5. The half came to a close after Megan Prescott scored her first goal of the game, followed by Phillips scoring her second to head into halftime with a 8-5 lead.
The second half began with a third goal from Prescott for her first hat trick performance of the season, but Vanderbilt answered back after scoring on a free position shot to make the score, 9-6. It did not take long for the Dolphins to extend its lead, as Molly Brock stepped up to score her first of the game.
It became a back-and-fourth affair as the Commodores scored at the 23:00 mark and Elms scored immediately after to make the score, 11-7. Less than a minute later Vanderbilt rallied back to cut the lead to three, but Phillips scored her third of the game to push the score to 12-8. This would mark Phillips first hat trick performance of the season.
As the clock began to wind down, the Dolphins went on a 6-3 scoring run. Elms and Phillips each scored to put the Dolphins on top, 14-5 with a little over ten minutes left. Vanderbilt did not go down without a fight as they scored back-to-back goals to slash the Dolphins lead to three once again.
Elms earned two consecutive goals to give JU a 16-11 lead with 6:28 left in the second half. The Commodores cranked out one more goal to put 12 points on the board, but it would not be enough to stop the Dolphins.
The next set of Dolphins to score were Elms, Prescott and Boyle. To finish the night, Elms recorded a new season-high statistic after scoring her seventh goal with one minute left in the game. This makes Elms seventh game with five or more goals and her twelfth game with a hat trick.
In addition to Elms, Phillips earned a season-high of goals in a game with four.
Prescott shined on both ends of the field as she tallied four season-highs with four shots with four on goal, three goals and nine draw controls.
The second round matchup is set for 12:00 EST against No. 6 Florida (17-2) on Sunday, May 16. JU met Florida earlier this year in its home opener and withheld a late comeback effort by the Gators to record the program’s first ever win over a top-five ranked opponent, with a final score of 12-11.
“I am really excited about this matchup against ranked Florida,” McCord said. “We have already competed against each other this season so I think both teams are going to come out strong.”