Saturday’s match against the No. 8 ranked Florida Gators might have been the greatest game in the history of the UConn women’s lacrosse program.
What was already a special day, with UConn’s five seniors being honored in Senior day ceremonies turned legendary when a 10-2 second half gave the Huskies the 11-10 victory as well as the program’s second largest upset ever.
“It feels awesome.” Head coach Katie Woods said. “ This is the epitome of our senior class, and everyone on the team and in the program represented it today.”
In the first half, Florida was everything the scouting report proclaimed them to be. The Gators bombarded UConn goaltender Shannon Nee with 19 shots in the first half. Nee made seven saves but couldn’t keep Florida from scoring eight goals. UConn’s lone goal came from Carly Palmucci.
“We had a really specific game plan going in and we were just a little bit uncomfortable with it in the first half” said Woods.
Despite the huge deficit UConn refused to break. Katherine Finkelston scored three consecutive goals out of the break to help cut the deficit and force Florida to call a timeout. Finkelston scored all four of her game high goals in the second half.
Alexandra Crofts and Grace Nolan also did their part in the comeback effort. With under 10 minutes left in regulation, Nolan was able to get behind the Gator defense and put home a wrap around attempt. Six minutes later Crofts received a pass from Finkelston and found the back of the net to even the game at 10-10.
The game winner came from Alyson Fazio after a free position attempt with just under three minutes remaining.
With possession and needing a score, Florida settled into their offense but an errant pass out of bounds gave UConn possession back. Florida was unable to cause a turnover and the Huskies mobbed together at midfield as time ended.
“I’m so proud of this team for taking control during the second half and proving to everyone the true team we are.” Said Grace Nolan. “ We made a statement today and we are ready to finish the regular season strong. “
The win gives UConn their second undefeated season at home in three years.
The Huskies will travel to Villanova this Saturday for their last game of the regular season. Both teams will enter the regular season with a chance to clinch a spot in the Big East tournament.