Freshman Danielle Horgan scored the first two goals of her career as the Stetson lacrosse team (0-3) fell to UC Davis (1-1) by a score of 18-4 on Sunday afternoon. The four goals were a season best for the Hatters.
"This game was definitely much better than our first two," Stetson head coach Nicole Moore said. "We're seeing development within our program and with our individuals. What's most important for us as coaches is helping our players understand what our goals are as a program. We left this game focused on the positives that came out of it."
For the second time in Stetson's first three contests, the Hatters scored first on Sunday. Just over four minutes into the game Stetson was awarded a free position. Freshman Noelle Morabito stepped up to the circle, took a few strides, and put the Hatters up 1-0 early on.
The Aggies countered with a score less than 30 seconds later and then tacked on two more to take a 3-1 lead less than seven minutes into play. Stetson fought back though, as Horgan scored the first of her two goals on the day with 23:04 left in the first. Freshman Mary Kate O'Sullivan found Horgan in the middle of the field before the midfielder went in for the first score of her career.
UC Davis then rattled off seven straight goals to take a 10-2 lead with 9:22 remaining in the half. Hannah Mirza highlighted the run with three goals during the stretch.
Stetson came back with a goal with just 4:08 remaining in the first half to make it 10-3. Horgan tallied her second score of the game, this time on a free position. Unfortunately, UC Davis scored three more to go into the break with a 13-3 advantage.
The Aggies outscored the Hatters 5-1 in the second half. Five different UC Davis players found the back of the net in the final 30 minutes of action. Freshman Paige Levesque was the Stetson player who put one on the board, scoring her second goal of the year off of an assist from sophomore Samantha Akl.
UC Davis outshot Stetson 43-11, forcing the Hatter goalkeepers to make 16 saves. Freshman Whitney Meyers recorded six in the first half, while freshman Caili Guilday stopped 10 shots in the second 30 minutes.
Stetson turned the ball over 23 times to the Aggies' 12, which led to a 25-16 UC Davis advantage in ground balls. Stetson was 2-of-5 on free position attempts and held the Aggies without a free position for the entire game. UC Davis finished with 18 draw controls to Stetson's five.
Horgan led the Hatters with two goals, and added one ground ball and one caused turnover. Freshman Maylis Broderick led Stetson with three ground balls and added two caused turnovers. Morabito also caused two turnovers and picked up two ground balls. Akl and Levesque each finished with two draw controls.
The Hatters will now look forward to a busy week beginning with a home tilt against William & Mary on Saturday, March 2 at 10:00 a.m. Stetson will then host Presbyterian on Tuesday, March 5, and welcome Campbell to the Athletic Training Center on Friday, March 8.