Belles Fall in Heartbreaker to Scarlet Hawks
- Kate Kelly led the Belles with three goals, two assists, and six draw controls.
- Clare Theisen also picked up a hat trick with three goals while pacing the team with six ground balls.
- Emilie Vanneste netted two goals.
SOUTH BEND, Ind. - Visiting Illinois Tech scored four of the final goals of the game to hand the Saint Mary's lacrosse team a heartbreaking 12-11 loss on Thursday night.
Illinois Tech struck with the first two goals of the game before Kate Kelly fed a pass to Clare Theisen for a goal less than five minutes into play. The Scarlet Hawks tallied a goal more than five minutes later, but Kelly got the Belles within a goal and Theisen knotted the game at 3-3 with 16:41 remaining in the opening half.
The Scarlet Hawks regained a one-goal lead a minute later, but the lead was short-lived for Illinois Tech. Saint Mary's rattled off three goals in a row to go up 6-4. Emilie Vanneste and Theisen scored within a minute of one another, and Lauren Telford capped off the scoring streak after both teams fought back and forth for possession. Illinois Tech made it a one-goal game with a tally with 5:27 on the clock, but Kelly and Hanna Makowski each scored a goal as the Belles continued to find an answer for the Scarlet Hawks in the first half. A late free position goal by the visitors made it an 8-6 game despite the Belles being in control of much of the opening 30 minutes of play.
Just as the weather shifted from the first half to the second half, so did the momentum in the game. The teams traded goals back and forth during the opening ten minutes of the second half. Molly Stout scored a point-blank goal off a pass from Kate Kelly, and Emilie Vanneste converted a free position opportunity to give the Belles a 10-8 lead with 20:48 on the clock. The Scarlet Hawks, however, chipped away at the goal differential and tied the game at 10-10 with 13:49 remaining before pulling ahead 11-1 with 11:32 on the clock. Kate Kelly quickly saw an end to that. The freshman won the draw, had a shot stopped, picked up the ground ball, and found a way to score just outside the goal circle to tie the game at 11-11 with 11:16 to go.
On the next possession, Cara Givens came up with a big save to keep the game tied up and both teams continued to fight for possession and the game-winning goal. Kate Kelly had a shot blocked from close range, but Givens made another big save as the clock moved below the five minute mark. A turnover deep in the Saint Mary's offensive end with under three minutes remaining proved to be costly for the Belles. The Scarlet Hawks successfully cleared the ball into their offensive end and, after a timeout, capitalized on a free position attempt for the go-ahead goal with 1:18 left in regulation.
Desperate to try to net the late equalizer, the Belles won the draw control and pushed the ball into the offensive end quickly. A turnover, however, resulted in another successful clear by Illinois Tech as the Scarlet Hawks ran out the clock for the 12-11 final.
Kate Kelly led the Belles with three goals, two assists, and six draw controls. Clare Theisen also picked up a hat trick with three goals while pacing the team with six ground balls. Emilie Vanneste netted two goals. Molly Stout, Hanna Makowski, and Lauren Telford each chipped in a goal.
Katlynn Dee led the team with five caused turnovers while Caleigh Gainey caused four turnovers and picked up five ground balls. Cara Givens made seven saves in goal over the final 45 minutes of play while Shannon Weyer picked up a save in the opening 14:35 of the contest.
The Belles (2-4) travel to Benedictine on Wednesday, March 30 for a 6:00 p.m. CDT game.