ECU women's lacrosse drops season opener at Furman

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GREENVILLE, S.C. (ECU) – In the opening game of the season, the ECU women’s lacrosse team fell to Furman 14-11 on Friday night at Paladin Stadium.

ECU opens the season 0-1 while Furman, the 2019 Southern Conference co-champions, opens 1-0.

The Pirates had nearly a perfect start to the game. After Grace Pollak opened the scoring for Furman just 25 seconds into the game, ECU grabbed control of the game. A pair of freshmen combined for ECU’s opening goal, as Frances Kimel found Ellie Bromley who scored her first goal as a Pirate.

After Bromley’s goal, AAC Preseason All-Conference selection Ally Stanton took over for the Pirates. She scored her first goal off a pass from Mackell Schultes. Less than two minutes later, Stanton buried a free-position shot to put ECU up 3-1 with 22:29 remaining in the first half.

Furman answered with two goals to tie the game up before Stanton scored her third goal of the game, this one of a pass from Nicole LeGar. It was the fifth hat trick of Stanton’s career.

The Paladins took the lead once again through Pollak, who scored her fourth and fifth goals of the half. The Pirates tied the game at 5-5 when Megan Palozzi scored on a free position shot. However, Furman scored the final three goals of the half to take an 8-5 lead at the break.

Coming out of the locker room, ECU’s defense helped pull the Pirates back into the game. ECU did not allow a Furman goal for more than 10 minutes to start the second half. On the offensive end, goals from Legar, Megan Tryniski and Bromley drew the Pirates level at 8-8.

From there though, the ECU offense went cold while Furman’s began to heat up. The Paladins scored six straight goals, with five different players scoring, to take a 14-8 lead with 4:31 remaining.

Tryniski finally ended the Paladin run with her second goal at the 1:42 mark. Pennypacker got her second goal of the day with 1:04 left, but it was not enough. The Pirates scored one more goal, a tally from Schultes with a second on the clock, to set the final score as 14-11.

Furman finished with a slight 25-24 advantage in shots while the Pirates had a 14-12 edge in draw controls. ECU was 11-of-13 on clears, 4-of-6 on free position shots and had 19 turnovers while Furman went a perfect 15-of-15 on the clear, 4-of-5 on free position shots and had 16 miscues.

Stanton led ECU with three goals while Bromley, LeGar and Tryniski each had two. Liz Blumthal led the Pirates with three ground balls and LeGar had a team-high four caused turnovers. LeGar and Pennypacker each had four draw controls. In her first collegiate start in the crease, Ashley Vernon made four saves.

ECU will finish its season opening road trip on Sunday afternoon when the Pirates take on Presbyterian. That contest is slated to start at 12 noon at Old Bailey Stadium.