via the school press releases
TAMPA, Fla. – The No. 11 Florida Southern College women’s lacrosse team defeated No. 12 University of Tampa by a final score of 20-10 on Sunday afternoon, winning their fourth Sunshine State Conference tournament championship in team history.
The Moccasins (15-3) qualified for the championship game as the second seed in the conference, defeating third-seeded, No. 14 Rollins College on Thursday, 17-11, at home. The Spartans (11-7) hosted the championship game as the first seed in the conference, after defeating fourth-seeded, No. 24 Saint Leo 19-6 in the semifinals.
This was the second meeting between the two SSC powerhouses this season, with the Moccasins winning the regular-season battle back on April 6 in a high-scoring affair, 23-19. The teams did not disappoint with plenty of strong offensive performances in the second showing of the year.
Hailey Daleo led the way with five goals for the Moccasins, while Brenna Smith had four. Sammy Gorrasi had a career day, notching her first hat trick by finding the back of the net on all three shots she took. As a team, Florida Southern had 35 total shot attempts, with the Spartans’ goalies having trouble making stops against the ever-powerful Moccasin offense.
Florida Southern’s Patricia Werker earned the win as she made eight saves through 60 minutes of action to defeat the Spartans and earn the conference championship.
Five Moccasin players were named to the All-Tournament team Patricia Werker, Hailey Daleo, Lizzy Lynch, Madison Kennedy, and Abby Hammond, the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.
Kennedy contributed four draw controls, taking a major role in the draw circle as the Mocs bested the Spartans in that category, 20-13. Lynch had six total points with four assists in the championship game, plus four goals in the semifinal win over Rollins.
Abby Hammond won eleven draw controls in the win over the Spartans, plus four in the semifinals. Over the course of the tournament, she collected five ground balls and forced three caused turnovers in addition to her staunch defensive play.
Gorrasi set the tone early for the Moccasins, scoring the game’s first goal with an assist from Lynch to put the team up 1-0. Tampa responded with a goal just under three minutes later before the Mocs embarked on a three-goal scoring run.
Daleo scored to reclaim the lead for Florida Southern, one that they wouldn’t relinquish for the rest of the game. Katie Yeagle scored with an assist from Abby McFerren, and Ellie Griffin tallied to end the first quarter with the Moccasins leading, 4-1.
The Spartans had a good start to the second quarter to keep the game close, scoring twice to make the deficit just one before Daleo and Yeagle notched their second goals of the game to put Florida Southern back up by three.
Again, the home team responded to momentarily cut the lead to just two goals, but the Moccasins ended the half on a four-goal scoring run to take a 10-4 lead into the locker room. Daleo, Smith, Lynch, and Elise Alders each scored assisted goals in a span of just over two and a half minutes to completely turn the momentum headed in the second half.
Gorrasi completed her hat trick with a pair of goals to open up the third quarter before Daleo and Smith tallied again, making it 14-5 in the third quarter. The teams alternated goals in the high-scoring third quarter, with Daleo, Smith, and Griffin scoring in the back half of the frame to give the Mocs an 18-9 lead after 45 minutes of play.
Lynch and Smith scored again in the fourth quarter as the Mocs fended off any offensive attack from the Spartans, while Werker made three saves in the frame to keep Tampa at bay.
Marlee Moon Gaddy put the exclamation point on the win for the Moccasins, outrunning the Spartan defense and firing the ball in the back of the net with just seven seconds to play, putting the Moccasins up by 10 for a running clock to allow the horn to sound to secure the conference championship for Florida Southern.
The four SSC tournament championship wins continue to be the most by any school in the conference as the Moccasins now set their sights on the NCAA tournament. Four teams from the South Region will be selected through at-large bids to qualify for the NCAA tournament, which is set to begin on May 8.
The selection show for the NCAA Division II Women’s Lacrosse tournament will be held on May 8, at 8:30 p.m. EST on NCAA.com.
TAMPA, Fla. – The University of Tampa Spartans women’s lacrosse team suffer a devastating loss to No. 11 Florida Southern in the SSC Tournament Championship.
INSIDE THE MATCHUP:
Final: Florida Southern Moccasins 20, University of Tampa 10
Records: #12 University of Tampa (11-7) , #11 Florida Southern University (15-3)
Location: Naimoli Family Athletic Complex | Tampa, Fla.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
The game started with early penalties by Tampa and Florida Southern got easy access to the goal scoring within the first three minutes. Alex Walling had a good save to prevent Florida Southern from going up by two. After finding their momentum, Tampa recorded a goal by Julia Kolderman with under 10:00 left. Tampa’s defense struggled a bit but didn’t stop bringing the intensity to make a comeback. The goals for the Spartans were scored as follows:
9:48 – Julia Kolderman, unassisted
Score: 4-1 (Florida Southern)
Tampa got the second quarter started with two early answered goals by Kolderman and Lizzie Pierpont cutting Florida Southern’s lead to one. Florida Southern responded with two goals of their own increasing the lead once again. Tampa didn’t stop fighting with another goal by Cece Colombo with under 5:00 left before halftime. Florida Southern then went on a run scoring four unanswered goals to end the second quarter. The goals for the Spartans were scored as follows:
4:50 – Cece Colombo, unassisted
Score: 10-4 (Florida Southern)
Tampa opened the scoring with an assisted goal by Colombo to Sarah Hinkle. With that assist Colombo reached her 100th point of her career. Florida Southern went on a little run, but Tampa called a timeout to slow down their momentum. Coming out of the timeout, Tampa scored two goals steadily chipping away at Florida Southern’s lead bringing it down to seven with 9:00 left. Tampa ended the quarter scoring two more goals in an attempt to keep themselves in the game. The goals for the Spartans were scored as follows:
11:01 – Julia Kolderman, unassisted
9:45 – Madison Birch, unassisted
3:40 – Julia Kolderman, unassisted
2:23 – Brynn Nestor, unassisted
Score: 17-9 (Florida Southern)
Florida Southern opened the scoring this quarter, but Tampa answered back with a goal of their own from Olivia Mott. Tampa’s defense was on top of things pressuring Florida Sothern’s offense forcing them to call a timeout. Even with this, Florida Southern still managed to score two answered goals to finish the game and win the championship. The goals for the Spartans were scored as follows:
10:47 – Olivia Mott, unassisted
Final: 20-10 (Florida Southern)
INSIDE THE STATS:
BEYOND THE BOX: