Fresh off the second win over a ranked opponent in program history, the Elon University women’s lacrosse team defeated Winthrop University 13-5 Wednesday night at Rudd Field, starting out its three-game homestand with a victory over the reigning Big South Conference champions.
After defeating No. 13th ranked University of Virginia 11-10 with on junior midfielder Abby Godfrey's free-position goal with one second left Saturday morning, the Phoenix avoided any noticeable hangover effect, jumping on the Eagles to the tune of an 8-1 first half. Elon’s strong defense and consistent draw controls kept Winthrop in their defensive end during the majority of the first half, only allowing three shots in the half.
While the match was controlled by Elon throughout, head coach Josh Hexter feels like Elon still has room to improve.
“I’m proud of them for the effort but we weren’t fully engaged,” said Hexter. “I felt like we left a lot of goals out there.”
Junior attacker Stephanie Asher added to her team-leading goal count with a hat trick on the night, rising to 13 goals for the year and 95 for her career at Elon. She also had three draw controls. Godfrey followed up her heroics from Saturday with a hat trick of her own. Senior attackers Anna Vitton and Sloane Kessler had big nights as well, with Vitton scoring two goals and Kessler netting a goal and four assists.
In net, senior goalie Rachel Ramirez saved two of the four shots she faced in 45 minutes of action. She sat in the other 15 as junior goalie Tori Cipollone got some action, just the third time Ramirez has ever sat during a game in the four-year history of the program.
The Phoenix improves to 3-0 on the season and hosts High Point University Sunday, Feb. 19. Elon was receiving votes but just outside the Top 20 in the Inside Lacrosse poll for this week, but a win could put the Phoenix into the ranking for the first time in program history. With currently No. 8 ranked Notre Dame coming to town Thursday, Feb. 23, Asher says the team doesn't pay attention to the polls.
“We’re not really looking at our ranking,” said Asher. “We’re just focusing on each game.”