The University of Redlands women's lacrosse team celebrated Faculty Appreciation Night with an exciting 10-9 win in double overtime against Chapman University on a chilly Wednesday night at Farquhar Field. After owning a 4-2 lead through a tight first half, the Bulldogs battled to stay in front but Chapman managed to force the game into overtime. With the golden-goal rule in effect, Redlands came up with big stops in the second extra period before senior midfielder Lacey Bjorndal (Sherwood, OR) converted a free-position goal for the game-winner in Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) action.
Junior midfielder Hanna Morford (West Linn, OR) put Redlands on the board less than five minutes into the game when she fired a shot past the Panther goalkeeper off an assist from sophomore attacker Charly Walter (Bethesda, MD).
Ten minutes later, the Maroon and Gray gained another hard-fought goal for the 2-0 lead, with this one coming off a dime of a pass from junior attacker Kelsey Ruhl (Seattle, WA) to first-year midfielder Isabella Leonardi (Napa, CA).
Over the next few minutes, the goalkeepers each stepped up with big-time saves, as senior Quinn Egan (Greenwood Village, CO) successfully protected the Bulldogs' cage.
At the 10:45-mark, Bjorndal took advantage of a free-position shot with her first goal of the game to make it 3-0.
However, Chapman pulled one back less than 60 seconds later on a free-position goal of its own.
The teams traded scores to finish out the half, with Redlands owning a 4-2 lead at the midway point of the game.
After the Panthers quickly tied it up by the 27:33-mark of the second stanza, Redlands fired off three-straight goals, with Bjorndal scoring one and providing the assist on Leonardi's netter. During this stretch, the Bulldogs earned back-to-back free-position attempts and then benefited from a Chapman yellow card. Capping off this scoring spurt, Ruhl found an open Morford to make it 7-4 for the Maroon and Gray.
However, Chapman refused to go away and eventually cut it to one at 7-8 with 10:34 remaining in the second half.
After a Panther shot flew wide, Leonardi hauled in the loose ball to set up the Bulldogs' successful clear to their offensive third. Morford took it coast-to-coast for the goal and the 9-7 advantage with 7:08 left on the clock.
Nonetheless, Chapman answered right back with two quick goals to even the tally at nine apiece.
Egan stepped up for a huge save at the 3:55-mark and then again on the Panthers' final shot in regulation, which came off a free-position attempt with eight ticks on the second-half clock.
With the score still knotted, the game headed into the first overtime. A flurry of turnovers resulted in no shots in the first three minutes of free lacrosse, but a late yellow card for the Panthers put Redlands on the advantage in the second, extra period.
Playing down a player due to the card, Chapman managed to nab the critical draw control. However, Morford responded with a well-timed caused turnover and ground ball pick-up for the Bulldogs. Bjorndal went on to earn the foul for the free-position attempt, which she converted for the Maroon and Gray's epic win.
Morford finished the night with four goals, four ground balls, and four draw controls. Bjorndal added three goals and one assist, to go along with four ground balls and four draw controls. Finally, Leonardi scored three goals, while Ruhl dished out three assists.
Overall, the Maroon and Gray won the draw-control battle with a 12-10 advantage.
Redlands (2-1, 2-1 SCIAC) heads east to Ohio for a pair of non-conference games during Spring Break. First, the Bulldogs square off against Denison University on Thursday, March 1, before taking on Capital University on Saturday, March 3.