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Herons lacrosse survives Ithaca rally for 14-13 win

The eighth-ranked William Smith College lacrosse team knocked off ninth-ranked Ithaca 14-13 in a hard-fought Liberty League contest at Higgins Stadium Wednesday afternoon. The Herons survived a 7-1 Bomber run down the stretch to secure their seventh straight victory.

Finger Lakes Partners (Billboard)

Sophomore Allie McGinty matched her career-high, recording a game-high eight points and five goals to lead William Smith (11-1, 6-0). It was McGinty’s third eight-point game this season. Maddie Montgomery added a hat trick and Kaitlin Pellechia had three points on two goals and an assist in the victory. Montgomery had a game-high six draw controls and Anna Murphy and Kelsie Worth had three caused turnovers. Payton McMahon and Kate Risley shared game-high honors with three ground balls. Maura Smeader played all 60 minutes in goal and made 13 saves.

Ithaca (10-2, 6-2) was led by Alexa Ritchie’s five points on three goals and two assists. Megan Motkowski matched Montgomery with six draw controls. Caroline Wise and Rachel Rosenberg finished with five draw controls each. Kelly Mehorter had a team-high three caused turnovers and three ground balls. Lexi Held played all 60 minutes in goal, making 10 saves.

Montgomery opened the scoring 90 seconds into the game. She fired home a free-position shot for her 40th goal of the season. Twenty-one seconds later, William Smith took a 2-0 lead on McMahon’s 21st goal of the season. McGinty picked up an assist on the goal. Rosberg started the scoring for the Bombers with her second goal of the year. She found an open lane in the Herons’ defense and ripped a shot past Smeader. Two minutes later, Pellechia collected a pass from McMahon right in front of the crease and slipped a shot past Held. It was Pellechia’s 15th goal of the season. With 7:43 left in the frame, McGinty rolled to the front of the cage and pocketed her 20th goal of the year. Maizy Veitch made it a two-goal game with 5:36 left in the first quarter. The unassisted goal was her Liberty League-leading 44th goal of the year. Montgomery answered for William Smith, scoring her 41st goal of the year. Maddie Hall wrapped up the first quarter with her eighth strike of the season. Motkowski was awarded an assist on the goal.

McGinty scored 51 seconds into the second quarter to give the Herons a 6-3 lead. Her 21st goal of the season was assisted by Katherine Murray. With 11:31 left in the frame, Ritchie beat Smeader with a free-position shot. Forty seconds later, Molly Davis notched her 19th goal of the season, making it 7-4. Sydney Phillips kept things close, bouncing home a free-position shot for her 16th goal of the year. McGinty and Murphy rounded out the scoring in the first half, giving William Smith a 9-5 lead after 30 minutes. McGinty’s 22nd goal of the season was unassisted. She then set up Murphy’s 33rd goal of the year 90 seconds later.

The Bombers opened the third quarter on Motkowski’s second goal of the game. The unassisted tally was her 31st goal of the year. William Smith created a little bit of separation, rattling off the game’s next four goals. Montgomery started the run with her 42nd goal of the year. Just under two minutes later, McGinty notched her fourth goal of the game with a woman-up free position shot. It was her 23rd goal of the year. With 8:29 left in the frame, Murphy stuffed home a feed from Davis for her 34th goal of the year. Three minutes later, McGinty added her fifth goal of the game off of a feed from Pellechia. It was her 24th goal of the year. Ithaca scored back-to-back goals to close out the quarter. Phillips converted on a free-position attempt and Wise collected a feed from Rossberg, making it 13-8 after 45 minutes.

Pellechia scored the difference-maker with 13:47 left in regulation. She collected a pass from McGinty for her 16th goal of the series. Ithaca would not go quietly, tallying the game’s final five goals. Wise started the run with her 29th goal of the season. Less than two minutes later, Madison Boutireia collected a pass from Wise and beat Smeader for her 22nd goal of the year. With 7:33 left in regulation, Ritchie scored her second goal of the game off of a feed from Hall to make it 14-11. Forty seconds later Ritchie returned the favor setting up Hall’s ninth goal of the year. Ritchie made it a one-goal game with her 34th tally of the season. Veitch was credited with an assist on the goal. The tally set up a crucial draw control with 1:09 left in regulation. Montgomery was able to come away with the victory and William Smith was able to bleed the final 69 seconds off of the clock.

Finger Lakes Partners (Billboard)

The Herons finished the game with a 32-22 edge in shots and an 18-13 advantage in ground balls. Ithaca finished the contest with an 18-13 advantage in the draw circle. William Smith was 19 for 23 clearing the ball and Ithaca was 16 for 20.

The Herons will be back in action Friday, April 15, when they take on Bard in the final game of a three-game road trip. The opening draw is scheduled for 2 p.m.