The Georgetown women’s lacrosse team (2-0, Big East) came away with a 10-7 win over No. 11 Towson (0-2, CAA) in its home opener on Saturday afternoon. Senior attacker Taylor Gebhardt scored her second hat trick of the season, while senior midfielder Francesca Whitehurst added a goal and three assists in the win. Three players had two goals for the Tigers.
Neither team scored in the opening 10 minutes, but junior midfielder Shelby Stack hit the post for Towson while senior attacker Morgan Ryan had two of her shots saved by Towson junior goalkeeper Kiley Keating. It would be the Tigers who broke through in the 11th minute with a goal from senior attacker/midfielder Natalie Sulmonte. A minute later, sophomore midfielder Caroline Frock answered for the Hoyas giving Keating no chance with a powerful shot from close range. Sulmonte scored from a free position shot in the 14th minute, and the Tigers could have added to their lead if not for a save from senior goalkeeper Haelle Chomo to keep it at 2-1. Junior midfielder Natalia Lynch equalized for the Hoyas in the 18th minute, and Gebhardt added two in the next three minutes to give the Hoyas a 4-2 lead while the defense held firm.
“We had a very good game plan,” head coach Ricky Fried said about the defense. “There were some mistakes made, but overall I’m very happy with how they adapted to what [Towson was] trying to do.”
Towson pulled one back with 2:02 left in the half on a counter attack, with freshman attacker Kaitlin Thornton finishing Sulmonte’s pass from behind the goal, but Ryan scored a rebound after Keating made a save, giving the Hoyas a 5-3 lead going into the break.
The Hoyas controlled the first half with seven draw controls to Towson’s two, and they would finish the game with a 14-5 advantage in that category.
“One of the big differences today was the draw controls, 14-5,” Fried said. “[When] we out possess teams, we’re going to make it really hard for them to win, so we’ve got to make sure that we continue to fight in that area and continue to do a really good job.”
The Tigers fought back in the second half, with Thornton scoring in the 35th minute. Gebhardt completed her hat trick three minutes later, but the Tigers answered again a minute later with a goal from senior attacker Carly Tellekamp. Then, the Tigers thought they had the game tied, but their goal was waved off, and Georgetown freshman midfielder Annabelle Albert scored her first career collegiate goal after picking up a rebound. Tellekamp would respond in the 46th minute to make it 7-6, and Stack converted on a free position shot the next minute to make it 7-7 with 13:04 to go. The Hoyas weren’t fazed though, and junior attacker Michaela Bruno scored on a free position shot less than a minute later to retake the lead 8-7.
“I thought that was probably one of our biggest moments, mentally tough moments. We didn’t back down, we didn’t worry, we didn’t start pointing fingers,” Fried said. “The biggest thing I’m proud of with this group thus far is the fight that they have and the effort that they’re putting out on the field on a regular basis.”
The Hoyas came up with stops on the defensive end to preserve their one goal lead, and Whitehurst came up with the dagger with 4:32 to go. Lynch rounded out the scoring a minute later, and after a final defensive stop, the Hoyas were able to milk out the clock the rest of the way for the win.
The Hoyas face Drexel (1-1, CAA) on Saturday on Cooper Field with the opening draw coming at 3:00 p.m. ET. For coverage of that game, as well as coverage of the rest of Georgetown’s sports programs, follow @GUVoiceSports on Twitter.