By Ronald Hanaki
On April 5, the No. 12-ranked West Chester University Golden Rams topped KU Women’s Lacrosse 14-5 at Andre Reed Stadium. With the win, West Chester is now a perfect 10-0 on the season.
For the Golden Bears, this was the second of a four-game home stand. KU came into this game riding a two-game winning streak, but PSAC-leading West Chester is undefeated this season.
The Golden Rams are an offensive juggernaut. As a team, they are second in the PSAC with a 36.7 shots per game average. Individually, West Chester junior Sami Barnett and sophomore Tatum Altman lead the conference in scoring.
West Chester dominated the first half. The Golden Rams scored two quick goals in the first three minutes and added three more goals to make the score 5-0 before KU answered with their first goal of the game.
In the 20th minute, junior midfielder Amanda Lehman finally put the Golden Bears on the scoreboard with her first goal of the season.
But the Golden Rams would score three more goals before senior attack Sarah Gabriele was able to answer with an unassisted goal for KU.
West Chester took a commanding 8-2 lead over KU into intermission.
Junior midfielder Lauren Schmidt opened the second half with an unassisted goal to cut West Chester’s lead to five goals.
But the Golden Rams answered with two more goals to extend their lead back up to seven goals with 20 minutes of regulation left in the game.
Juniors Emily Smith and Makayla Bowman would both score for KU, but West Chester had too much offense. West Chester as a team outshot KU 34-22.
The Golden Rams simply ran the Golden Bears out of the stadium in a dominant 14-5 win.
Although it was a tough game for KU, freshman goalkeeper Haley Kline continued to shine for the Golden Bears. She made 14 saves and gave KU a fighting chance to stay competitive with West Chester.
After the game, KU Women’s Lacrosse Head Coach Jackie Stezzi said, “I have to give them credit. They are a very talented team.”
“We fought hard for 60 minutes, but we made some mistakes,” stated Stezzi.
West Chester had a 28-20 edge over KU in ground balls and forced the Golden Bears into committing 25 turnovers.
“It’s the little things that kill you,” stated Stezzi. “We played a good team, and they are going to capitalize on those mistakes.”
“But I have to hand it to [West Chester Head Coach] Ginny Martino. She picked up her 300th career win recently, so she is very–seasoned,” said Stezzi.
“It’s our first year together, so we are still figuring things out,” she said.
“We have to have a short memory because we play Edinboro in two days and then Slippery Rock,” said Stezzi.
“We’ll take our lumps and learn from them and get better.”