Penn State (1-0) opened up their season against an outmatched Bucknell team (0-2) with one simple goal in mind--to dominate.
The No. 10 Nittany Lions completely outplayed the Bisons 18-2 in front of an energetic home crowd at Holuba Hall.
The Lions’ offensive attack was too much for the Bisons to handle as the Lions jumped out to a comfortable 9-0 lead at halftime, allowing them to coast the rest the rest of the way to an easy victory.
The huge margin of victory also allowed coach Missy Doherty to give some bench players valuable playing experience early in the year.
“I think overall we have a really good bench, so we wanted to give as many players as possible time to play and contribute,” Doherty said. “It’s great especially this year when we have such a young team. It’s great to have all of the players get in and experience what it’s like to play Division 1.”
The Bisons defense was busy all night long facing 38 shots in total.
It was the exact opposite for the Lions’ goalkeeper, Emi Smith, who had to face only five shots, saving them all, before she was relieved in the second half by Ayla Halus.
For the freshman Smith this was her first college game behind the net and her played resembled that of a veteran senior.
“I always have game jitters, but I just took it as any other game,” Smith said. “I went into it with a strong mindset that I was going to do well and that my team would be in front of me supporting me and I would be behind them supporting them.”
The only people that were able to match the team’s intensity on the field where the fans in the stands. The Penn State faithful came out in full force for this Wednesday night game, starting a “We Are” chant and waving a Penn State flag after each of the Lions’ 18 goals.
“It’s great to have all our friends and family here for our home opener,” senior and captain Molly Fernandez said. “It’s great to play in Holuba and see all the support we have.”
Junior Mackenzie Cyr led the offensive explosion with four goals on four shots and three assists.
Another star of the game was freshman Jenna Mosketti who had a breakthrough performance with three goals in her first collegiate game.
The women’s lacrosse team will need a similar type of performance this weekend as they travel to play No. 6 Loyola on Saturday.
“I think that [Loyala] brings in similar attributes as our team,” said Doherty. “We’re really going to have to be on our toes.