ORANGE, Calif. – A furious comeback was turned away in the final minute as the Chapman University women's lacrosse team fell 13-12 to Johnson & Wales. Senior Stacey Zuppa scored five goals for the Panthers (0-4), including Chapman's final two goals.
Chapman went up first when Zuppa scored unassisted just four minutes in. Sophomore Danelle Lucero converted a free-position shot just 30 seconds later to make it 2-0 Chapman.
Over the next 16 minutes, Johnson & Wales (2-1) embarked on a 4-0 run to take the lead 4-2. Four different Wildcats scored on the run, including the first goal of the after for Dani Lydecker. Lydecker scored six of the Wildcats' 13 goals and Maria Patane out four more in the net to fuel the visitors' attack.
Chapman fought back and tied the score at 5-5 when sophomore Alexandra Callaway scored with 3:51 to go in the first half. Lydecker struck for her third goal of the opening half with just more than two minutes left to give JWU a 6-5 lead at the break.
The match was immediately tied up at 6-6 but Johnson & Wales jumped back out in front. Lucero and junior Danielle Zahn connected on back-to-back goals to tie it at 8-8. Patane put the Wildcats out in front before a 10-minute break from the scoring.
Finally, Callaway made it 9-9 with her second goal with just over 14 minutes to go. The Wildcats seem to put things away as Lydecker and Patane combined to score the next four goals in the next six minutes.
The Panthers had one more push left in them as freshman Alex Jones scored with six minutes left. Zuppa brought the Panthers back within two just 34 seconds later and she made it 13-12 when she converted a free-position shot just 25 seconds after that.
JWU was able to corral the next draw control to stop the scoring spree but came up empty as sophomore Haley Reinhard came up with a big save. With less than a minute left, Zuppa drove and found sophomore Allie Qualman in front of the net. Goalie Cassidy O'Hara turned away Chapman's final attempt to secure the victory for the Wildcats.
Lucero, Callaway and Zahn all scored twice for the Panthers while Reinhard made seven saves in goal.
The Panthers are back at home next Friday to take on Rhodes at 7 p.m.
By Steven Olveda
Sports Information Director