Lacrosse: No. 2 Northwestern defeats Ohio State to continue undefeated season

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Daily file photo by Joshua Hoffman

Izzy Scane patrols the field in the season opener against Ohio State. Scane scored 8 goals against Ohio State on Thursday.

Gabriela Carroll, Senior Staffer


Lacrosse


Northwestern protected their undefeated record this weekend with a 21-14 win over Ohio State.

Even though the Wildcats scored eight first-half goals — six of them courtesy of junior attacker Izzy Scane — the Buckeyes didn’t let NU pull away. Ohio State led the draw control battle 11-7 and scored four consecutive goals to take a 9-8 lead into halftime.

We didn’t play our best game in the first half,” said senior attacker Sammy Mueller. “We all just had to put in the hard work in the second half, and we knew we weren’t playing our best, but we had to do scrappy things and put in the hard work plays that would eventually help us win.”

In the second half, the Cats certainly played like they wanted to win. And they got it. Behind an offensive clinic from players such as senior attacker Lauren Gilbert and Mueller, NU (10-0, 10-0 Big Ten) scored 13 goals in the second half to defeat the Buckeyes (3-8, 3-8 Big Ten). With the victory, the Cats have completed a season sweep of every conference team except for Michigan, who they will face next Sunday for the first time.

“Obviously we’re undefeated and we’re putting up a lot of goals against teams,” Scane said. “This is fun competition and close games are exactly why you play the sport.”

Mueller, who had four goals in the second half, said that she felt the team scored on more breakaway opportunities and located more open players to diversify their offense.

For Scane, the half offensively was a sharp contrast from her strong performance in the first 30 minutes. But the Clarkston, Mich. native still praised her teammates for creating scoring opportunities that may not have appeared on the scoresheet.

“I tried to come out with confidence in our offense and confidence in each other,” Scane said. “You might not see the little plays that are happening behind the scenes that are creating the openings that I was getting and the feeds that I was getting, but everyone on offense is doing something that’s making it a little easier for me to get open.”

Thanks to that second-half offensive rally, this matchup didn’t look very close. But coach Kelly Amonte Hiller’s group ran into one of their first bouts of adversity this season, and shook it off easily in the second half.

In their season-opening matchup against Ohio State on Feb. 14, NU dominated the first half, scoring 14 goals and holding the Buckeyes scoreless. Amonte Hiller said she thought that this time around, Ohio State came out much stronger and credited the Cats’ performance in the second half to them resettling into the game.

“We needed to step it up and compete on every little play,” Amonte Hiller said. “Draw controls were a huge factor we didn’t do as well in the first half and we were able to make some adjustments there and dominate that area so we got more possessions.” 

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