The University of Redlands women's lacrosse team battled it out with Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) foe, Pomona-Pitzer Colleges, on Saturday for Senior Night. After prevailing against the Sagehens in overtime earlier this season, the Bulldogs expected another hard-fought contest. Tonight's showdown indeed provided similar drama between the familiar foes, as Redlands rallied back from five goals down to force overtime. But the visiting team edged the Bulldogs in sudden-victory overtime by a score of 14-13.
Prior to the game, Redlands recognized its four seniors for their contributions during their respective careers.
After the first draw, the team traded leads and scores in the opening frame, resulting in a five-all tally after 30 minutes of action. Sophomore midfielder Stephanie Garrett (San Diego, CA) stepped up with three of Redlands' netters, while senior attack player Allie Hoffler (Draper, UT) distributed two assists in the first half.
The Sagehens came out of the intermission with a newfound energy, firing off five unanswered goals to take a 10-5 lead with 17:14 left in the second half.
Nevertheless, Garrett ended the Bulldogs' scoring drought by uncorking two goals over the next four minutes.
But Pomona-Pitzer had an offensive answer for both of her scores, keeping the Maroon and Gray's deficit at five with 12:16 remaining on the clock.
Now it was senior midfielder Jacky Craycraft's (Trabuco Canyon, CA) turn to take over, as she unleashed a hat trick over the course of the next four minutes to pull the Bulldogs within two at 10-12.
After Garrett snagged a critical draw control, Redlands gained a free-position opportunity but opted to reset the offense. Garrett eventually rocketed a shot toward the net but the Sagehen goalkeeper made the save, deflecting it back into play. Freshman attack player Dulce Moll (Mercer Island, WA) then uncorked a shot but it bounced off the post.
In the Bulldogs' third offensive attempt of this possession, junior midfielder Emily Dalrymple (Snohomish, WA) found sophomore midfielder Ellen Holt (Happy Valley, OR), who converted a huge goal with 3:44 to go in regulation to make it a one-score game.
Following a Sagehen timeout, Pomona-Pitzer launched a pass out of bounds, giving the ball back to Redlands. The Bulldogs worked the ball around for a few minutes, allowing Garrett to find her rhythm and score the game-tying goal with 49 seconds left.
The Maroon and Gray got one more shot off before time expired but the Sagehen defense stepped up to force overtime.
Both teams scored once in the first extra periods, with Redlands' Moll notching the netter off of an assist from Garrett.
Defensively, freshman goalkeeper Gigja Hollyday (Aliso Viejo, CA) came up with three huge saves in overtime, keeping the Sagehens off the board until they finally converted a free-position opportunity with five seconds to go.
With the tally at 13 apiece, the game headed to sudden-victory overtime. After a scoreless three minutes, Pomona-Pitzer corralled the all-important draw control and eventually found space in front of the cage, leading to the game-winning goal by Rebecca Long.
Overall, Garrett led all players with six goals and two assists to go along with seven draw controls. Craycraft added three goals, while Hoffler dished out three assists.
Junior defender Robin Taylor (Poway, CA) provided a strong presence in the back field, registering two caused turnovers and three ground balls for the Maroon and Gray.
With Redlands, Pomona-Pitzer, and Occidental College all tied with an 8-2 record at the top of the standings, goal differential is necessary to determine the seedings for the SCIAC Championship Tournament. The Sagehens gain the slight edge at plus two, with the Bulldogs landing second at zero. Occidental become the No. 3 seed at minus two.
Redlands (11-4, 8-2 SCIAC) enjoys a first-round bye in the tournament and looks forward to hosting a semifinal game on Mon., April 28, at 7 p.m. on Farquhar Field. The Bulldogs face the winner of the Occidental-Whittier College showdown, which takes place on Wed., April 23, in Eagle Rock.