Meghan Falconer, Contributing Writer
The University of Dallas women’s lacrosse team finished its season in St. Louis, Mo., playing two well-fought games against Dubuque College and Fontbonne University this past weekend.
Despite the heat and humidity, the Crusaders had an impressive start to their Dubuque match, leading four goals to one.
Junior Mary Hilker effectively pushed draws out to sophomore Hayley Rodgers, and the two took turns working the crease until one of them had an opening to roll the ball around and shoot. However, as the first half continued, the Crusaders, missing two key midfielders, began to fatigue, and Dubuque picked up speed and finished the half 6-6.
“Our team started getting sloppy on defense and in transitions, dropping passes and missing slides, and as frustration built, our communication broke down, making things even worse,” said sophomore Shea Mahoney.
The second half brought even more frustrations for UD. Juniors Mary Hilker and Meghan Falconer were unable to gain possession of the draws, and Dubuque merely had to wear down UD’s defense for the rest of the game. Crusader junior Christine Jablonsky, however, was on fire in the goal and finished the day with an astounding 22 saves!
The final score of the match was 8-13, with four goals from Hilker, two from sophomore Hayley Rodgers, one from Falconer and one from junior Anne Belton.
Sunday’s game against Fontbonne began with more promise for the Crusaders. Since injury had also plagued the Fontbonne roster, the teams agreed to play 10 vs 10, leaving UD with an extra player to substitute in and out. Rodgers and Hilker dominated the beginning of the first half, together scoring four goals in the first five minutes. However, as Fontbonne slowly began to draw controls and UD struggled with sloppy checks and technical mistakes, the score evened out, and the half ended 7-7.
The Crusaders began the second half with some of the same dominance they had at the start of the game. Rodgers and Falconer each quickly scored, and Mahoney made an incredible interception on defense, regaining Crusader possession.
Nevertheless, Fontbonne also had success as UD once again succumbed to sloppy defensive mistakes on transitions. Fontbonne was able to get two free position goals, and emerged victorious, scoring 12 total goals to UD’s 10. Despite the loss, Jablonsky had 165 saves, breaking the University of Dallas all-time record for season saves. The previous record, set in 2007 by Jennifer Kunhardt, was 162 saves.