At the beginning of the second half in No. 10 Penn State’s game against No. 6 Loyola on Saturday, the Greyhounds held possession, won draw controls and bombarded the Penn State net with 16 shots.
The half started with Penn State leading by one, but in the next nine-minute span, Loyola scored three goals to build a lead that Penn State would not be able to overcome as it lost 13-11in Baltimore on Saturday afternoon.
“They had the ball in their offensive end, we couldn’t get the draw so we didn’t have any possessions during that time in our offensive end,” coach Missy Doherty said via telephone Saturday. “Our defense played really well and then they caught a couple eight-meter shots and pulled ahead.”
An eight-meter shot is a shot taken eight meters from the cage, usually in a free-position shot after a defensive foul. The Greyhounds took advantage of their free-position shots by capitalizing on both of their shots in the second half.
Despite the strong start for Loyola in the second half, Doherty believed her freshman goalkeeper Emi Smith played well.
“She was pretty solid in the cage and made some good saves at pretty critical times,” Doherty said.
Another freshman, midfielder Jenna Mosketti, continued her hot start to the season by scoring two goals and adding one assist. Other midfielders, including Ally Heavans and Kelly Lechner, led Penn State’s offense by scoring seven of the Nittany Lions’ 11 goals.
“Our midfielders played well,” Doherty said. “We’re asking a lot from them this year and hopefully they just keep getting better.”
Loyola took a quick 2-0 lead at the beginning of the game before Penn State scored four goals in a row to take the lead. At the end of the first half the Nittany Lions led 7-6.
In the second half, the Greyhounds scored four goals before the Lions got on the board. Penn State made an effort in a comeback by scoring three goals in a three-minute mark to cut Loyola’s lead to one.
With a little more than two minutes left in the game, Loyola’s Kara Burke scored her third goal of the game to seal the victory.
“It’s hard to be upset at [the team]. They worked hard the entire game,” Doherty said. “They did what we wanted them to do, we just didn’t execute our shots at times when we could have tied up the game.”