Women's lacrosse falls at TCNJ, 8-7, in top-five showdown

Women's lacrosse falls at TCNJ, 8-7, in top-five showdown

EWING, N.J.- The No. 4 Salisbury University women's lacrosse team took on No. 3 The College of New Jersey on Saturday afternoon and fell 8-7 in the road matchup of ranked squads.

Salisbury struck first as Gabbi Nieves put one in off a Kristen Murphy feed just under three minutes into the contest.

Megan Wallenhorst then tacked on another for the Gulls to put them up 2-0 with 18 minutes left in the opening half.

TCNJ notched its first at 16:16, but the Gulls responded with goals from Gabrielle Mongno, Dana King, and Emma Wall to take a commanding 5-1 advantage with 4:17 still remaining in the first half.

Just as it looked like the teams were going into halftime at 5-1, Courtney Natalicchio scored with one second remaining off an end-to-end TCNJ clear that ended in offense.

Murphy opened up the second-half scoring, beating the TCNJ goalie with an unassisted goal at 27:51, but the Lion's would control the game from there on out.

Starting at 26:14 with an Amanda Muller score, the Lions put in six goals in a row to take an 8-6 lead into the final 5:53 of the second stanza.

King got one back for Salisbury to bring it to 8-7 with just over five minutes left, but both goalies came up with some big saves down the stretch.

Gianna Falcone took the loss in cage despite stopping half of the shots the Lions put on cage, finishing with eight saves, while Miranda Chrone got the win for TCNJ with seven stops.

Kayla Miller had a standout performance on the defensive end, scooping up four groundballs and adding a caused turnover, while Wall was second on the team with three groundballs.

Both teams cleared at a 100 percent mark on the day as Salisbury went 12-for-12 and the Lions succeeded in their 10 attempts. Keeping to the clean nature of the game, Salisbury only turned the ball over 11 times and TCNJ nine times.

Salisbury almost doubled up the Lions on fouls, being whistled 38 times to the Lions' 19 infractions.

Salisbury returns to action on Saturday, April 23 as it will host a Capital Athletic Conference semifinal game against the winner of a first-round contest between fourth-seeded York College of Pennsylvania and fifth-seeded Christopher Newport University.

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