Pennypacker, White help ECU WLAX top George Washington, 10-9

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (ECU) – In a game that featured two lead changes and six ties, the ECU women’s lacrosse team finished ahead in the end, beating George Washington 10-9 on Friday afternoon.

“This was a total battle and great team win for our program,” said head coach Amanda Barnes Moore. “We showed so much heart and fight after starting with three goals against. Christina White was an absolute rock back in the cage in the second half and overall, we just played tough to finish the game. I’m proud of the effort and heart this team is showing us.”

ECU (3-1) has already set a new record for wins in a season, besting its inaugural season total. The Pirates also avenge an 18-7 loss to George Washington (0-2) in ECU’s inaugural game in February 2018.

The game could not have gotten off to a worse start for ECU. The Buff and Blue scored the game’s first three goals, all before ECU even got a shot off.

The Pirates took a timeout to regroup and came out looking to get back into the game. Megan Pallozzi finally got ECU on the scoreboard with 24:36 left in the first half, but George Washington answered with another goal to cancel it out.

ECU’s defense clamped down after that Buff and Blue goal, allowing the offense to methodically get ECU back into the game. The Pirates allowed just one goal the rest of the half and held George Washington scoreless for a stretch of nearly 17 minutes at one point. During that scoreless streak, Camryn Pennypacker, Nicole LeGar and Pallozzi all scored for ECU, tying the game at 4-4. George Washington got the final goal of the half to take a 5-4 lead into the locker room.

The second half could not have been tighter, as neither team led by more than a goal during the final 30 minutes. LeGar scored her second goal for ECU to tie the game at five, but ECU could not take its first lead as George Washington scored off a free positon shot.

With 19:46 left in the second half, Pallozzi scored her third goal of the game, with Ally Stanton getting her third assist on the goal. Hannah Rzempoluch finally gave ECU the lead just over three minutes later when she scored off a feed from Pennypacker.

The lead was short lived, as George Washington scored to tie the game at 7-7 with 11:04 remaining. The two teams traded goals for the next nine minutes. A Pennypacker goal made it 8-7, but the Buff and Blue scored less than a minute later to tie the score once again. Brittany Borchers scored on a free-position attempt, but that marker was canceled out by a George Washington tally with 3:27 remaining.

With the clock winding down, every possession became crucial. The Pirates showed that by winning the draw off the George Washington goal, with LeGar getting credit. ECU used nearly all of the shot clock before LeGar found Pennypacker, with the freshman scoring the go-ahead goal.

Holding the slim one-goal lead, ECU had to sweat out the final 2:04. George Washington won the ensuing draw and an ECU foul gave the Buff and Blue a golden opportunity. Luckily for ECU, Christina White’s school-record 19th save came on that ensuing free-position attempt, denying George Washington its final chance to tie the score.

George Washington finished with a 39-23 advantage in shots and a 13-8 edge in draw controls. Pennypacker led ECU with four points on three goals and an assist. Stanton (three assists), LeGar (two goals, one assist) and Pallozzi all finished with three points each. White finished with the school record 19 saves while Hannah Melton had a team-best six ground balls.

ECU will continue its road trip on Sunday at Delaware State. The game is scheduled to begin at 12 noon.