UF: #3 Gators Grind Out Conference Win over Villanova 19-9

via press release – photo via UF web site

 

Box Score GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The University of Florida women’s lacrosse team (12-2, 6-0) downed the visiting Villanova Wildcats (3-10, 1-5) on Wednesday afternoon, 19-9. The victory marked Florida’s sixth of at least 10 goals, including its fourth in a row.

Florida was dominant in the draw circle, winning 19 of 30 opportunities. Senior attacker Mollie Stevens finished the game with seven, and sophomore midfielder Sydney Pirreca came away with a career-high six.

The Gators took a 13-3 lead into halftime, with senior attacker Sammi Burgess tallying four first-half points including her 32nd assist of the season, making her Florida’s single-season assist leader. Burgess would finish the game with five points (two goals, three assists) and two ground balls.

Sophomore attacker Lindsey Ronbeck had a well-rounded performance against the Wildcats with four goals, three ground balls, two draw controls and two caused turnovers. Wednesday’s game was Ronbeck’s seventh of the season with at least four goals.

The Gator defense held Villanova under their season scoring average and forced the Wildcats into 17 turnovers. Wednesday’s game was the seventh this season that Florida has forced a single-digit scoring output, and the 12th time they have held an opponent under their scoring average. Freshman Cara Trombetta and sophomore goalkeeper Haley Hicklen both came away with four ground balls.

Freshman goalkeeper Kenzii Kittell recorded three saves while giving up zero goals in 3:10 minutes to close out the game.

Bresnahan and Fitzgerald Tied Atop the Record Book
Defensive stalwarts Taylor Bresnahan and Caroline Fitzgerald had a banner outing in the Gators’ 19-9 win over Villanova. Bresnahan recorded one caused turnover, one draw control, and one ground ball. Fitzgerald caused three turnovers in the first half and scooped up two ground balls. The pair of senior captains are now deadlocked for first place all-time at Florida with 81 caused turnovers in their careers.

Records:
No. 3 Florida: 12-2 (6-0)
Villanova: 3-10 (1-5)

Notable:

  • Caroline Fitzgerald is just two ground balls away from passing Nora Barry (141) for the most all-time at Florida
  • With 76 draw controls this season, Mollie Stevens is just eight away from passing Shannon Gilroy (83) for the most in a single-season in Florida history
  • The Gators have won 17 consecutive BIG EAST games dating back to the 2015 season
  • #PirrecaPower: Pirreca sisters Shayna and Sydney have combined to score 28% (64/233) of Florida’s goals this season
  • Florida owns a 76-11 (.874) record all-time at Donald R. Dizney Stadium

O’Leary’s Insight:
“Credit Villanova for coming in here and playing very aggressively today. They were able to capitalize on some of our miscues, and that is something that we need to work on heading into Butler on Saturday. I’m pleased we were able to make the necessary adjustments and come out with a win against a very good team.”

Up Next
The Gators will travel to Indianapolis, Ind. to challenge BIG EAST newcomer Butler (1-12, 0-5) for the first time on April 15.

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