By Justin Sweitzer
KU lacrosse has fallen victim to superior programs in recent years.
This year, however, they have taken a stand, winning their first four games of the 2016 season, defeating the likes of Holy Family University, University of Charleston, Alderson Broaddus University and Chestnut Hill College for their best start since the program was reinstated in 2008.
Holy Family’s women’s lacrosse team came to Andre Reed Stadium on March 2, looking to add their name to the list of programs teams that have had their way with Golden Bears lacrosse.
KU hosted the Holy Family Tigers in their season-opener on a cold, gusty day in which KU sophomores Lauren Huggins and Sarah Gabriele set the tone for the Golden Bears win by a score of 12-8.
Huggins netted four goals on the day, three of which came in the second half and preserved KU’s lead, leading to the first win for the Golden Bears since March 11, 2015.
Sarah Gabriele also left her mark against Holy Family, scoring three goals out of her team-high 13 attempts on goal. KU attempted 32 shots overall compared to Holy Family’s 17.
KU also exhibited a stellar defensive performance against the Tigers, forcing 32 turnovers throughout the course of the game.
It was the most turnovers the Golden Bears have forced since 2009 when they forced 36 against the Bloomsburg Huskies.
KU’s momentum continued in their games against the University of Charleston Golden Eagles and the Alderson Broaddus Battlers.
The Golden Bears went on a tear in South Carolina, scoring 18 goals en route to an 18-4 win against the Golden Eagles.
The talent of younger members of the Golden Bears team dominated the game.
Freshman Lauren Schmidt contributed six goals to the Golden Bears winning effort and sophomore Sarah Gabriele continued to make an impact for the Golden Bears, scoring two goals while also adding an assist to her name.
Freshman Emily Smith had five goals in the game and Lauren Huggins led the Golden Bears in assists with three against the Golden Eagles.
Their momentum didn’t stop there. KU defeated the Alderson Broaddus Battlers by a margin of 16 goals, winning 18-2.
The dangerous tandem of Gabriele and Huggins continued to assert their dominance in the third game of the season.
Gabriele scored four goals and Huggins added three. Freshmen Lauren Schmidt and Makayla Bowman both added two goals and two assists in the Golden Bears third victory of the season.
Huggins continued to be a force for the Golden Bear team during spring break as she secured a Golden Bear victory over Chestnut Hill with a game-winning goal during overtime to lead the Bears over the Griffins, 11-10.