Penn women’s lacrosse has a knack for making big games look easy.
It did that on Saturday when they handily took down Dartmouth, 17-6. The Quakers (9-2, 2-1 Ivy) tied their season high in strikes with 17 en route to winning their third straight.
The Quakers dominated on offense, but their defensive effort also deserves praise. For the ninth time this season, the Red and Blue held their opponent to fewer than 10 goals. The team has won all nine of those contests.
The No. 10 Quakers played host to the Big Green (5-5, 0-4) after a trying three-game road trip that was capped off with a statement victory over then No. 16 Northwestern. The Red and Blue carried that momentum up to the start of play and struck just one minute after opening draw.
The game’s first goal was scored by senior attack Emily Rogers-Healion, who would go on to have a six-point affair. She has 16 goals in 11 games after scoring 17 in 20 games last year. Her recent performance has been a boon to the Quakers’ scoring efforts in 2017.
The Quakers would draw twice more in the following 10 minutes, creating a 3-0 lead halfway through the first half. The Big Green would come roaring back in their most notable run of the game, scoring off a free position goal and then tallying another just 40 seconds later.
But a one-goal deficit was the closest the game would remain on the day. Penn went on a 6-0 run to round out the first half. Two goals came from the team’s star midfielder Alex Condon, three from freshman sensations Erin Barry and Gabby Rosenzweig, and another from Rogers-Healion.
Six-goal deficits are hard to overcome in any sport, women’s lacrosse being no different. Making matters even more difficult is the Quakers’ strong defensive play. With the Red and Blue needing to conserve a lead, one would expect the team to hold back, run down the clock, and ease off the pressure. That was not the case on Saturday.
The Quakers kept their foot on the gas pedal for the game’s last 30 minutes. Just 20 seconds in to the second stanza, Rosenzweig scored her eleventh tally on the year. Only one minute later, Condon would draw again, her 26th of the season. With an 11-2 lead, the game was all but over.
After another goal from Dartmouth, the Quakers put up four straight. With little left to play for, the Quakers eased up, allowing the Big Green to go on a 3-2 run in the game’s final 11 minutes. The final score was 17-6 in favor of the Quakers.
The Quakers will need to continue their winning ways in Ivy League play in order to ensure favorable positioning for the Ivy League tournament at the end of the season, as well as possibly winning the Ancient Eight title.
The Red and Blue continue their Ivy League play on Saturday when they travel to New York to face off against Columbia.