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Saint Leo Women Lose 14-13 to UAH After 5-Goal Rally in Final 3:26 Falls Short

Written by Lee Roggenburg on . Posted in , , , .

via Saint Leo press release/website

Women’s Lacrosse Comeback Halted at Huntsville


HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Despite scoring five goals in the last three and half minutes of regulation, No. 24 Saint Leo women’s lacrosse team lost 14-13 on the road versus the University of Alabama in Huntsville in non-conference play during its season-opener Friday night.

During the contest, junior Maria Palomba surpassed the 300 draw controls for her career.

As Saint Leo was down 14-8 with less than four minutes remaining in the game, sophomore Marina Dean notched an unassisted goal to get build momentum for the Lions. At the 2:55-mark, junior Emma Hayhurst cut the deficit to 14-11 on an assist from senior Cassidy Passaro. Over a 30-second span, Saint Leo pulled within two as sophomore Jana Nuss and Passaro both notched a score, 14-12. Junior Ava Valenti helped the Lions continue to climb back as she blasted a solo goal with 11 seconds remaining on the clock. However, in the closing seconds, Saint Leo was not able to score.

Lions jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the opening quarter as Valenti dished out an assist to Hayhurst before Nuss found the back of the net to extend the Saint Leo lead, 2-0, at the 12:52-mark. Freshman Briana Bellando earned her first career goal with 11:38 left in the first quarter as the Lions commanded a 3-0 edge. UAH answered with a trio of goals before the quarter ended as the game was tied 3-3 heading into the second quarter. During the initial five minutes of the second frame, both teams were scoreless until senior Fiona McLaughlin and Nuss both registered man-up goals before junior Delaney Gilchrist stretched the Saint Leo lead to 6-3. At halftime, the Green and Gold held a 6-4 advantage.

Saint Leo continued to pick up where they left off in the third quarter as Valenti and McLaughlin each scored to give the Lions a 8-4 edge. However, the Chargers scored seven consecutive goals to end the quarter and tallied three goals at the start of the fourth to lead 14-8.

Nuss recorded five points with a hat-trick of goals and a pair of assists while causing two turnovers as well. McLaughlin and Hayhurst both finished the game with two goals. Additionally, Valenti posted two goals and one assist. Junior Julia Sharp grabbed two ground balls and caused a pair of turnovers. Palomba accounted for half of Saint Leo’s draw control total as she accumulated 10.

In the net, sophomore Jessica Harclerode posted 14 saves as she played the complete 60 minutes.

The Green and Gold recorded 24 shots with 22 of them on-goal while getting 24 ground balls, the Lions also held a staggering 20-8 advantage on draw controls.

Saint Leo returns to the field tomorrow, Saturday, February 17 as face Shorter University in Rome, Ga. at 10 a.m.