Athena’s comeback to edge Poets 7-6 in OT
Whittier, Calif. – The Whittier College women's lacrosse team was on the brink of picking up one of the biggest women's lacrosse victories in the program's history Saturday morning as they fell 7-6 to Claremont-M-S in OT after holding a lead a majority of the game.
A combined 13 goals were scored in the seasons lowest combined goal total in one game within the conference. Whittier put together their best performance of the season on a beautiful day in Whittier, Calif. Six minutes in freshman attacker Jess Hansen (Seal Beach, Calif.) capitalized on a free position giving the Poets an early lead. Two minutes later, senior captain Shaina Denny (Seal Beach, Calif.) got into the mix collecting an unassisted goal putting the Poets up two.
Claremont-M-S would cut the deficit to one thanks to Anthea Weixel on their next possession but the Purple & Gold would respond adding three unanswered from Lily Baxter (Phoenix, AZ) coming on two free position shots, and an assist from Denny that extended the lead to 5-1 with 4:16 to play in the first half.
With 3:09 to play Alex Miele from CMS would add a late goal that stopped the bleeding but the Poets would still cling to a 5-2 lead at the break.
Out of the break, Claremont-M-S would add a free position goal to pull within two 5-3 from Izzy Laterzo, but once again Whittier would rally back to convert on their own free position attempt from Hansen moving the lead back to three. At the 24:32 mark CMS put together their own run to get back into the contest. Over a five minute period CMS would add three straight from Zoe Pinczower, Molly O'Donnell, and Hillary Slauson that tied the game up at six.
Over the final nineteen minutes of regulation a defensive stand took place from both teams with neither able to take a lead. Under a minute to play both teams had clean looks on goal but both goalies made tremendous saves down the stretch keeping the game knotted up at six forcing the game into OT.
In the first session of overtime Claremont-M-S would get the lone goal at the 1:19 mark from Pinczower that gave them a one goal advantage. Denny had a shot at the buzzer but it was turned away by Athena goalie Sara Ginsburg. In the second overtime period Whittier had one shot on goal from Rebekah Delledera that went high and that would be the final attempt for the Poets as CMS would hold on for the one goal victory.
Between the posts junior Nicole Yorba collected a career and game high 16 saves against 23 shots in her best game of the season.
Whittier returns to action this Wednesday, February 19 on the road as they travel to Redlands to take on the Bulldogs beginning at 7:00pm.