After a mostly forgettable month of March, the USC women’s lacrosse team hopes to get back on the right track to start the month of April as they head up north to take on Oregon on Thursday, April 4 at 4:30 p.m. in the first live-broadcasted lacrosse game on the Pac-12 Network.
The Women of Troy (5-8, 2-2 MPSF) finished with a 3-6 record in March after a 16-11 loss to Denver (11-1, 3-0 MPSF). The Women of Troy looked rusty, perhaps as a result of having more than a week of rest in between games and fell behind 10-3 at the half. After giving up the first goal of the second half, USC finally appeared to wake up, scoring four unanswered goals to cut Denver’s lead to four.
But the team was unable to cut the deficit any further, as Denver held on to keep USC’s current skid alive. Freshman midfielder Amanda Johansen led the Women of Troy with five points (three goals, two assists) and eight draw controls, while freshman attacker Caroline Cordrey scored four goals.
“There’s always going to be runs in the game of lacrosse, and we just have to limit the other team’s runs,” USC head coach Lindsey Munday said. “It’s really hard to have a shutout, so we can’t get down if they do get a goal. We have to respond to their goals and make good plays [on offense].”
Freshman attacker/midfielder Caroline de Lyra leads the team with 71 points (41 goals, 30 assists), while Johansen is second with 42 points (32 goals, 10 assists) and also leads the MPSF with 74 draw controls.
As they have been all season, de Lyra and Johansen will have to continue to lead USC’s attacking game for the team to be playing its best lacrosse at season’s end.
“We’re approaching the last four games of the season,” Munday said. “Right now we’re in a good spot in our conference, and we have the ability to do some great things this season. We need to learn from the games that we’ve had in the past and the losses that we’ve had, but in the end it’s a new season and we’re starting from scratch and really trying to get better every single day.”
Oregon (5-5, 0-1 MPSF) is coming off a three-game road trip after playing its first seven games at home, finishing 1-2 after barely beating Old Dominion (3-8, 1-0 Colonial) 10-9. The Ducks are led by Shannon Propst’s 33 points (14 goals, 19 assists) and Kate Cathell’s 28 points (19 goals, 9 assists). Oregon is averaging 9.5 goals per game and 9.7 goals allowed per game, compared to USC’s 12.4 goals per game and 12.2 goals allowed per game.
After the trip to Oregon, USC will play the remainder of the regular season in California. They will return to McAlister Field to play California (6-4, 3-0 MPSF) on Friday, April 12 at 3 p.m. and Fresno State (2-7, 0-2 MPSF) on Saturday, April 20 at 3 p.m. The Women of Troy will then head down to San Diego to conclude the regular season against San Diego State (7-3, 2-1 MPSF) on Saturday, April 27 at 7 p.m.
“We need to come off the first whistle on fire,” said freshman defender Courtney Tarleton, “We’ve started pretty slow, so as long as we’re coming out ready to play we’ll be fine.”