May 6, 2012
AMHERST, Mass. - The #8/15 UMass women's lacrosse team defeated Canisius 13-12 in the NCAA play-in game on Sunday at McGuirk Alumni Stadium, giving them an automatic berth to the NCAA tournament. A Jesse O'Donnell free position goal with four seconds left in regulation gave the Minutewomen the win.
UMass improved to a 19-1 record, just one win shy of tying the program record for wins in a season, and Canisius fell to 10-9 on the season.
Tanner Guarino and Jesse O'Donnell each scored four goals a piece in the victory, Guarino going a perfect three-for-three in free position goals. Lauren Terracciano notched two goals to go along with an assist and Dayna Defilese and Katie Ferris each put one in for UMass.
Canisius was led by Morgan Leonard and Megan Oosting, who each had three goals a piece, Oosting also assisted two times in the game. Maria Kotas was also a difference maker in the game, winning a team-high three draw controls and scoring two goals. She also caused a game-high four turnovers.
Katie Florence made seven saves to improve her record to 19-1 while Kayla Scully made 10 saves for the Golden Griffs.
UMass started things off, scoring the first goal of the game. Canisius fired back quickly however, scoring two in a row to take the lead but less than ten seconds went by before UMass answered to tie the score at 2-2. After the score tied again at 3-3, UMass went on a three goal run in 1:40 of play but were unable to keep their lead as the Golden Griffs came firing back with three straight goals of their own. The score would remain tied going into halftime with each squad scoring seven goals.
UMass scored first and early in the second half but were unable to break away from Canisius, as they continued to match any scoring efforts the Minutewomen put together. A falling down goal in the middle of the second half by Ferris gave UMass a two goal advantage with more than 15 minutes of play left. Canisius cut that lead to one exactly three minutes later and then would score again with 25 seconds left to tie the game at 12-12. O'Donnell won the draw for UMass and was fouled with four seconds left on the clock when she would be awarded a free position opportunity, which she capitalized on and gave UMass the victory. UMass out-shot Canisius 28-20 but the two teams were even on ground balls with 11 apiece. The difference maker was draw controls, with UMass winning 19 and Canisius winning 8. UMass also never failed a clear attempt throughout the game, going a perfect ten of ten.