BY SPENCER ALLEN, STAFF WRITER
The Crusaders have been given ample opportunities to prove their mettle on the field and as a team this season. They have not disappointed — in fact, they have gone above and beyond most expectations. This season has flown by the seat of its pants, breaking records and inspiring confidence and pride in Susquehanna’s women’s lacrosse program. Spectators and players, especially, could not have been more pleased.
“We came out nervous but we played really well in the second half and stepped it up,” junior Emma Ehler said. “It’s good that we got the nerves out before the play-offs start.”
Two recent road game wins have shown exactly how tough the Susquehanna women’s lacrosse team is in the last few games before the Landmark semifinals. The team has moved to 14-0 and 3-0 within the conference.
The first of the two games took place on April 20 against their historic rival, the Catholic Cardinals. The first half of the game was in Catholic’s favor, as they took the early lead into the half with them up 7-6. But that lead was not made to last.
Shortly after the halftime break, the Susquehanna girls came back with three fast goals to put them ahead 9-8. Trying to push the lead further, Susquehanna put in five unanswered goals, and then finished with one last goal leaving them clearly up 15-10. For the Crusaders, the excitement and pride was tangible after overcoming their long-time rivals.
This was the team’s first win over the Catholic Cardinals, and earned the team the No. 1 seed in the upcoming Landmark Conference Tournament. Midfield Emma Ehler led the Crusaders with six goals overall and three assists, shortly trailed by fellow junior midfield Michelle McGinniss with four goals and an assist. Sophomore midfield Brynn Reid chipped in with an additional four goals. Senior goalkeeper and captain Emily Stankaitis held Catholic at bay with her 12 saves on the day.
Four days later, the Crusaders travelled to Scranton to play Marywood in a night game. The 11th ranked Susquehanna team came out early in the game with three unanswered goals, but Marywood soon got back on the board coming within a few goals with 7:48 left on the board. By halftime the Crusaders were up 13-4 in a healthy lead.
Coming out of the halftime break, the Susquehanna girls charged on through and scored another four goals over Marywood. With only 10 minutes left to play, the Crusaders, unperturbed, stormed on, intently continuing their scoring spree. They wrapped the game up to win 21-7. That success brought their team’s season to 14-0. Michelle McGinnis led the team with seven goals and an assist, followed by Brynn Reid with four goals and two assists, while Emma Ehler threw three goals and two assists into the mix.
Saturday’s game will finish up the regular season for the Crusaders. They will play at 2 p.m. at Goucher.