TopOfTheCircle.com

Serving the scholastic field hockey and lacrosse community since 1998

May 7, 2016 — A resurgence

Five weeks ago, there was an occurrence during a women’s lacrosse game that’s been seared into memory.

In the third minute of a regular-season women’s lacrosse game between Northwestern and Maryland, the visiting Wildcats had their first possession after losing the first two draws. The ball was in the stick of Selena Lasota, who was about 14 yards from goal, and the rest of her team had pulled out wide.

It was an isolation play from the center, where Lasota would try to dodge defender Alice Mercer of Maryland. But Lasota, scorer of 69 sometimes spectacular goals last year, put the ball on the turf. Mercer gratefully scooped up the groundball and led a break that resulted in not only Maryland’s second goal, but a run of three straight goals to stake Maryland to a 4-0 lead on the way to a 17-4 win.

Northwestern in general, and Lasota in particular, have been struggling in 2016. The Maryland game was the third during the season in which she had no goals or assists. And the team was hovering under the .500 record that was necessary for at-large selection to the NCAA Tournament.

But in the last week, the native of British Columbia has been absolutely brilliant. Last week, in a game that Northwestern absolutely had to have, she had eight goals and an assist to lead Northwestern to a lopsided win over Ohio State. She then had three goals and three assists in the Cats’ Big Ten Tournament opener against Michigan, and a goal and an assist over Penn State in a 9-6 victory in yesterday’s semifinal.

Tomorrow, at a lakeside pitch near Chicago, the Wildcats will take on top-ranked and two-time defending NCAA champion Maryland in the Big Ten final. Because of Lasota’s resurgence, this is going to be a much closer match than the last two meetings, where the Terps 10-goalled the Cats.

Tomorrow, we see what happens.

 

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