Lacrosse team ends five-game losing steak

Sophomore+midfielder+Abby+Jones+%5B27%5D+cradles+the+ball+during+the+women%E2%80%99s+lacrosse+game+on+Mar.+8%2C+2020.+Kent+State+University+women%E2%80%99s+lacrosse+team+lost+to+University+of+Cincinnati+25-8.%C2%A0

Sophomore midfielder Abby Jones [27] cradles the ball during the women’s lacrosse game on Mar. 8, 2020. Kent State University women’s lacrosse team lost to University of Cincinnati 25-8. 

Jacob Shondel , Reporter

The Kent State lacrosse team ended its five-game losing streak with a strong first-half Saturday, defeating Saint Francis of Pennsylvania 17-14.  

During the losing streak, KSU was outscored 54-27 in the first half. On Saturday, the Flashes held an 8-3 lead at halftime.

“We need to have fast starts,” coach Brianne Tierney said. “Being able to get momentum early is crucial and is something we haven’t been able to do much during the last five games.”

Kent State improves to 3-8. SFU falls to 2-5. 

Saint Francis scored the first goal, but the Flashes answered by scoring six consecutive goals.

“We got caught on our heels, allowing that opening goal,” Tierney said. “It took a second for us to get going, but once we did, it was nice to see the offense and defense have success throughout the first half.”

Tierney was happy to see the team keep momentum throughout the game. 

“It was the first time all season we continued to make the right plays all game,” she said. “We were scoring goals in the game where we turned the ball over in previous games. Those changes were big for us today.”

Going into the fourth quarter, the Flashes led 12-9. But Saint Francis scored the opening two goals of the period.

Midfielder Abby Jones – who finished with three goals – then scored her 100th career goal, giving KSU a two-score lead. 

“Definitely an awesome moment getting to 100,” Jones said. “I wouldn’t be able to do it without my teammates, but more importantly, I’m glad we got the win today.”

Tierney was happy Jones achieved this milestone. 

“I know we thought this would come a little sooner than it did, but she’s been getting other players more involved this season,” Tierney said. “It’s definitely a big moment for the program, having someone reach 100 goals for the first time.”

Attacker Megan Kozar scored her fifth goal of the game with 1:47 left, giving the Flashes a three-score lead. 

“We never allowed them to take momentum,” Tierney said. “Anytime we gave up a goal, our offense stepped up and found the back of the net.”

Saturday’s game was the last non-conference game of the season. 

“We have to be able to carry momentum into our final six games,” Tierney said. “We have to win out, and that starts with Detriot.

“This team never gives up, and I’m excited to see them back out there Saturday.”

Attacker Jackie Wolford scored four goals and has a team-leading 25 on the season. 

The Flashes had 34 shots, with 29 on goal; Saint Francis had 29 shots, with 24 on goal. 

Kent State (0-4 Mid-American Conference) will face Detriot Mercy (1-3 MAC) at 4 p.m. Saturday at Dix Stadium.

Jacob Shondel is a reporter. Contact him at [email protected].