March 25, 2012
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -
The University of Louisville women's lacrosse team had an inspiring start to Saturday's contest, taking a quick 5-1 lead, but the Cardinals were unable to hang on and fell short to seventh-ranked Notre Dame, 13-11, at Arlotta Stadium in South Bend, Ind.
Casey Pepperman tallied the game's first goal on an unassisted score at the 24:44 mark, and Nikki Boltja increased the Cardinals' lead to 2-0 with her 29th goal of the season at the 23:34 mark.
Notre Dame (7-0, 1-0 BIG EAST) responded with a goal, but Louisville's offense continued to push with scores from Jamie Redding, Janaye Dzikewich and Cat Gordon to jump to a 5-1 lead. The Fighting Irish, who rank No. 3 nationally in scoring offense, had nine unanswered goals to take control with a 10-5 lead five minutes into the second half.
Louisville (2-6, 0-1) began to chip away, as Colleen O'Malley netted a goal on a free-position shot to bring the Cardinals within four, 10-6. Notre Dame added two more goals, but Gordon registered her eighth goal of the year and Boltja recorded goals 30 and 31 to cut the deficit to three.
Boltja and Dzikewich scored goals in the final three minutes of the game, but the rally wasn't enough to overcome Notre Dame's mid-game run.
Louisville won with a sizeable advantage in draw controls, 17-9, and tied Notre Dame with 19 ground balls apiece.
Gordon finished with a strong all-around game, tallying two goals, an assist, one ground ball and seven draw controls. Dzikewich, who netted her first two goals of the season, finished with a team-best two caused turnovers.
Danielle Pawliw and Ashley Herbst each spent time in goal, and Pawliw, who was credited with the loss, made 11 saves in the game.
Louisville wraps up its five-game road swing with a trip to Cincinnati to face the Bearcats on Tuesday, March 27, at 5 p.m.