Drexel Advances To The Tournament Final With a Hard Fought 14 – 10 Win Over Hofstra
PHILADELPHIA, PA. 5/6/2022 –
The weather, less than ideal. Much less. Chilly, windy, and rainy. But that did not matter to the teams. For the #2 Drexel Dragons and the #3 Pride of Hofstra a trip to the CAA Women’s Lacrosse final and a possible bid to the NCAA Tournament would await the winner of this game. In a tightly contested game Drexel held off a Late Hofstra rally to win. The Dragons face the top-seeded Towson Tigers in the final on Sunday. It is something the team pointed toward since coming together this season.
“This is exactly what they’ve been working for since they stepped on the field in September,” said Drexel Assistant Coach Alyssa Guido. “The second they stepped on the field they said this is exactly where they want to be. It is a team goal to be here on Sunday.”
Towson defeated Delaware 12 – 8 in the first semifinal.
Withstanding a Hofstra Rally
The Dragons were in control taking a 10 – 6 lead into the fourth quarter. Then Hofstra began to win draw controls, five to one in the final fifteen minutes. Four straight goals by the Pride, two by Taylor Mannella who had a game-high 5 goals, would knot the game at 10. The equalizer a free-position score by Katie Whelan at the 8:07 mark.
Drexel won the draw and put pressure in the possession having three shots, two from eight-meters, before Dragons midfielder Corinne Bednarik broke through with a goal with 6:03 on the clock to regain the lead, her second of the game. Hayleigh Simpson got the assist.
Hofstra won the ensuing draw, but Simpson would impact the game again by causing a turnover giving the ball back to Drexel. Less than a minute later Lucy Schneidereith would find the back of the net for a 12 – 10 advantage. Colleen Grady got the assist.
Still, Hofstra stayed in proximity, and had a huge opportunity by an extra-man opportunity. Drexel midfielder Karson Harris was sent off for two minutes. The Dragons withstood the penalty, got the ball back, then with 3 seconds remaining on the shot clock the Pride got whistled for a foul. Harris atoned by converting a free-position goal with 2:39 to play. She would score again just 1:17 later to wrap up the scoring. Harris scored a team-high tying three goals.
And would thwart the Hofstra rally by staying focused.
“Being able to stay composed,” Guido said. “When things aren’t going our way being able to stay composed will carry us through the rest of the season.”
A key factor for the Dragons is experience. They have nine players who are graduate students or seniors. Those player were key contributors scoring 10 goals, posting 2 assists, picking up 3 ground balls, and won 10 draw controls. Colleen Grady got the ball past the goal keeper 3 times and had a helper. Maura Cissel was victorious on 5 draw controls. Graduate goal keeper Zoe Bennett saved 5 shots. Harris added an assist and 4 draw controls.
The younger player, Bednarik a junior, contributed with 2 goals and 5 draw controls.
For Hofstra Kerry Walsert and Amanda Guerra scored two goals each. Goal Keeper Jess Smith made 9 saves. Drexel was turned away on 5 of 13 free-position opportunities. Hofstra was good on 6 of 9. The Pride picked up 18 ground balls to 11 by the Dragons.
Will the Dragons claim the title?
It comes down to Sunday.
Written By: Glenn Papazian