10 Saves for McMullan
BOSTON – Playing from behind almost all afternoon Wednesday at BU, the Yale women's lacrosse team battled back to tie the game 7-7 in the second half. But BU then reeled off five goals in a span of just over nine minutes, and that was enough to put Yale away as the Terrier claimed a 13-8 win. Freshman midfielder Cathryn Avallone led the Bulldogs with a pair of goals, while sophomore goalkeeper Erin McMullan made 10 saves.
The game was originally scheduled for Feb. 29 but was re-scheduled due to a winter storm. That decision paid off with beautiful weather Wednesday afternoon, including bright sunshine and temperatures in the 70s at Nickerson Field. BU (4-4) scored on its first possession, but senior attacker Caroline Crow tied things up by driving in from the side of the cage and depositing her 10th goal of the year at the 21:49 mark.
McMullan's 10-save effort included some spectacular ones. At the 18:30 mark she denied a point-blank shot by attacker Mallory Collins off a feed from behind the cage by attacker Catie Tilton. But a turnover by the Bulldogs -- one of 16 on the day -- gave the Terriers the ball back and they went up 2-1 when attacker Hannah Frey bounced one in at 17:16.
After BU tacked on two more goals and took an early 8-2 lead in shots, Yale called timeout.
The Bulldogs responded after the timeout, with Crow drawing BU goalie Christina Sheridan out of the cage before passing to sophomore midfielder Ashley McCormick, who found the back of the net from distance at 12:43. Avallone built on that by drawing a foul and converting a free position shot amidst heavy traffic three minutes later to pull Yale within 4-3.
BU scored again to go up 5-3, but the Bulldogs continued chipping away as the first half wound down. After a pass on a free position attempt for the Bulldogs nearly resulted in a turnover, junior attacker Devon Rhodes grabbed the loose ball, drove to the cage and scored her ninth goal of the year with 2:49 left.
BU got the draw control after that goal and appeared ready to run down the clock for the final shot of the half, but that plan changed when the Terriers got a free position shot with 52 seconds left. McMullan made the save, and the Bulldogs pushed the ball up the field. Sophomore attacker Jen DeVito got the ball behind the cage and curled around in front to stuff in the game-tying goal with 19 seconds left.
A pair of free position goals at the start of the second half gave BU a 7-5 lead, but the Bulldogs once again responded. Freshman midfielder Erin Magnuson's first career goal pulled Yale within one, and sophomore attacker Meghan Murray tied things up with a free position goal at 25:37.
The game then settled into a defensive stalemate, with neither team scoring for nearly 13 minutes. Five turnovers in that span hurt Yale, and BU had eight ground balls in that same time frame en route to a 21-8 ground ball edge for the game. The Terriers were finally able to solve McMullan again on a free position shot by attacker Molly Swain after a yellow card on Rhodes with 13 minutes to play.
The Bulldogs got the ball after that goal due to an illegal substitution call against the Terriers. But Yale came up empty on a long possession, as Sheridan made a pair of key saves. BU then extended its lead to 9-7 on a goal by attacker Danielle Etrasco with 8:11 to play, and the Terriers scored three more in the next four minutes -- including a pair of free position goals by midfielder Annie Stookesberry.
That left Yale (2-4) facing a 12-7 deficit with just 3:49 to play. While Avallone was able to score on a free position shot with 3:02 left, the Bulldogs would get no closer. Collins scored again with 51 seconds left for the 13-8 final.
Three of Yale's four losses this season have seen the Bulldogs within two goals of their opponent in the second half. In the 9-8 loss at No. 10 Dartmouth the Bulldogs were tied 8-8 until the final 2:12. In the 12-6 loss to No. 8 Penn the Bulldogs were within two, 6-4, entering the final 22 minutes.
Yale returns home to host Harvard Saturday at Reese Stadium at 3 p.m., the second game of a lacrosse doubleheader that also includes the men's lacrosse team hosting Princeton at Noon. It is also Alumnae Weekend.
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity