BRYN MAWR, Pa. - After a long stretch without a game in almost two weeks, the Bryn Mawr lacrosse team was finally back in action earlier Saturday afternoon. The Owls showed no signs of rust in the early going against DeSales, keeping within a goal through the first half of the opening period. However, the visitors offense finally came to life in the final 45 minutes of play, as the Bulldogs' possession game ultimately wore away at a stingy Bryn Mawr defense. In the end, the visitors claimed a 14-4 victory, but there were still plenty of positives for the Owls. Four different players scored for Bryn Mawr, showcasing the depth of this Owls squad, and Katie Alpert posted yet another strong day, making 21 saves on the afternoon.
Bryn Mawr had two great looks early on in this one, getting two shots on goal in the opening minute of play. However, Bulldogs' goalkeeper Lori King made two solid saves on those efforts, and the visitors were able to gain possession. DeSales (2-4) got on the board first in this one with a goal 1:10 into play, but Bryn Mawr (0-4) responded immediately with a goal of their own. Alison Spain took control of the draw following the Bulldogs' opener and raced into the offensive zone, ultimately earning a free position shot. The senior co-captain got a great look at the cage, firing a shot past King and into the netting to tie things up at 1-1.
The visitors jumped back in front with a goal a few minutes later, but Bryn Mawr's defense continued to frustrate the Bulldogs attack. The Owls were able to tie things back up with 15:36 to play in the half on another free position shot. After going 0-for-11 on free position efforts in their first three games this season, Diana Kelley gave Bryn Mawr their second free position goal of the game. Kelley, a fellow captain and senior, tallied her first goal of the season with another sharp shot into the netting.
DeSales retook the lead just a minute later, at which point Owls head coach Kelly Barnes called a timeout to give her team a breather and try and draw up another goal. However, the stoppage seemed to have the opposite effect, unfortunately for Bryn Mawr. DeSales rattled off six straight goals over the next 12 minutes, slashing through the circle and getting some pretty great looks on the net. Bryn Mawr finally stabilized things with under a minute left, as Kendall Derber turned an Owls clear into a goal with 34 seconds left in the half. However, in response, DeSales' Danielle Burke tallied her 16th goal of the season with just 10 seconds left to play in the half, sending the the Bulldogs to the break with a 10-3 lead in the contest.
The visitors would tally again four minutes into the second half, but Bryn Mawr did a much better job settling down defensively, and that created more opportunities in transition. The Owls would tally their fourth and final goal of the day with just under 25 minutes left to play thanks to another solid defensive play. This time it was junior Ana Kyrcz who made the big play, causing a Bulldogs turnover in their own zone. Kyrcz picked up the loose ball and fired a pass to Colleen McGrath, who was cutting in front of the cage from the middle. McGrath managed to get her stick on the pass and, in one motion, turned and fired a shot low and into the cage. That gave McGrath her first career goal and Kyrcz her first career assist as well. DeSales would close out the scoring with three more goals over the final 20-plus minutes, however, giving the visitors the 14-4 victory.
Katie Alpert once again had a day worth mentioning in the cage for Bryn Mawr. The senior stalwart posted another 20-plus save performance, stopping 21 shots in the cage. That moves her career total to 622, just seven saves back of tying the all-time career saves record at Bryn Mawr.
Alpert and the rest of the Owls will look to continue their strong play when they get back in action next week. Bryn Mawr will kick off a three-game road trip next Wednesday when they travel to Rosemont. That game is slated to start at 7:00 PM. The Owls will then also travel to Muhlenberg and Bryn Athyn to close out the month of March.