Goaltending lifts women's lacrosse to OT win in home debut
ORANGE, Calif. – Clutch shooting and big saves proved to be the deciding factors in overtime for the Chapman University women's lacrosse team as they defeated visiting SCIAC opponent Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges 15-14 on Wednesday night. The overtime victory came in the Panthers' home debut at Wilson Field and first ever as an NCAA Division III team.
The driving force of Chapman's late defensive play though was junior G Kara Podesta who held the visiting Athenas scoreless in the first period of overtime, allowing the Panthers to build a 15-13 lead. Despite allowing a goal in the second period of overtime, Podesta was clutch as she blocked a shot by Claremont senior M Madi Shove that would have tied the game with 59 seconds remaining, giving Chapman possession until the final whistle.
Wilkinson led the offense from the start as she gave Chapman a 5-1 lead early, scoring four goals in the first seven minutes. The junior finished with a game-high six goals, while freshman M Kelsey Mackin added four goals of her own.
Although they gained a fast advantage, the Panthers were unable to maintain a 7-4 cushion as Claremont (1-1 overall, 1-1 SCIAC) went on a 5-0 run that carried into the second half and gave them a 9-7 lead. Freshman D Christina Coffin scored two of her team-high four goals during the run, including the goal that gave the Athenas their first lead of the game 8-7 at the 21:13 mark of the second half.
From there the lead exchanged hands three times before Shove tied the game for the Athenas with just under two minutes to play. In the final 60 seconds of the second half Podesta again rose to the occasion with two blocked shots off free position attempts sending the game into overtime. Podesta finished the game with 14 saves as the Panthers were out-shot 30-24 in the game.
Chapman looks to continue its unbeaten streak Saturday as they welcome SCIAC opponent Redlands to Wilson Field at 7 p.m.
by Bogart Avila
Sports Information Intern