Posted: March 12, 2008
BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Lehigh hung tough all afternoon long with one of the toughest teams it will see all season on Wednesday afternoon, but in the end the Mountain Hawks fell just short vs. Drexel 14-13 at the Ulrich Sports Complex. Freshman Lauren Dykstra, junior Meghan Tenety and sophomore Inneke Carmola all scored four goals apiece for the Mountain Hawks who fall to 5-2 overall and see their three-game win streak snapped. Jessica Bill netted a team-high four goals for the Dragons who improve to 6-1 overall.
The contest was physical throughout with Drexel whistled for 33 fouls and Lehigh called for 12. The Mountain Hawks took 26 shots on the afternoon, led by Carmola’s nine and Dykstra’s eight, while Drexel was credited with 31 shots. Tenety and Dykstra both scooped up five ground balls for Lehigh, as both teams totaled 37 for the game. Sophomore Kelsy Ferris stopped 14 shots in goal for the Mountain Hawks, while for Drexel, Lauren LaBella sent back eight Lehigh shots before giving way to Rachael Behrndt who made two crucial saves in the closing minutes.
“It was a well-played game,” Lehigh head coach Liz Ota said afterwards. “We took away some of their strengths, particularly on defense where we did a nice job of stopping their fast break.” She continued, “On offense we moved the ball well; I would have liked to have seen us be slightly more successful with our eight-meter shots though.”
Ota added, “(Goal keeper) Kelsy (Ferris) was solid in goal for us and Meghan Tenety had her best game today. The whole offense worked well together in getting quality shots.” She concluded, “Drexel’s draw control is potent and we did a nice job against it. Overall I’m really pleased with our performance and this game will prepare us well for Sunday.”
Tenety started the scoring for Lehigh just 1:28 into the game off of a feed from freshman Allison Thomas, but Becca Drylie-Perkins quickly tied the contest at one less than two minutes later. Carmola answered with her first score of the game at the 21:51 mark, however from there the Dragons ripped off five straight scores to take a 6-2 lead with 3:59 remaining in the half.
Tenety netted her second score of the game off a feed from Dykstra at the 3:07 mark, but Drexel scored the final two goals of the half to take an 8-3 lead into intermission.
Carmola opened the second half with a goal off a Dykstra assist at the 27:54 mark, but again Drexel had an answer as it scored two straight scores, making it a 10-4 Dragon lead. The Mountain Hawks roared back with goals from junior Sara MacIntyre, and two from Dykstra to pull within three at the 22:39 mark.
Kaitlin Keegan and Katie Bradley gave Drexel a 12-7 lead with 20:48 to go, but Carmola netted her third goal of the day at the 19:29 mark and Lehigh was once again within four. After a Drexel goal by Keegan, Tenety netted her third goal of the game making the score 13-9 with 17:39 left on the clock. Jessica Bill countered that with a score off a feed from Drylie-Perkins that put the Dragons up by five with 17:02 which is when Lehigh began its comeback.
Dykstra and Tenety scored on back-to-back free position shots to pull the Brown and White within three at 14-11 with 12:19 to go. Carmola then netted her final score of the afternoon with 8:37 on the clock and the Mountain Hawks were down just two. Dykstra scored on another free position shot with 4:30 to go and Lehigh was down just one. That was as close as LU would get however, as Behrndt made a huge stop on a Carmola shot with just over two minutes remaining, and a tough charging call on the Mountain Hawks seconds later gave Drexel the ball back and the Dragons ran the clock out.
Lehigh will be back in action on Sunday afternoon when the Mountain Hawks travel to the nation’s capital for a huge Patriot League showdown with the American Eagles. The opening draw control from Washington, D.C. is scheduled for 2:00.
Photography (c), 2008 Greg Fota.