USC Lacrosse Blocks Out Sun Devils in Desert Season Finale
TEMPE, Ariz. – The USC lacrosse team (9-6, 6-3 Pac-12) weathered a desert storm by Arizona State (8-5, 5-4) to seal a 16-14 win over the Sun Devils at Sun Devil Soccer and Lacrosse Stadium on Friday, April 23. The win secured second place in the final Pac-12 regular season standings for the Women of Troy--which gives USC a bye through the quarterfinals of the conference tournament--and avenged an early-season home loss to ASU.
- Sr. midfielder Kelsey Huff led the Trojan attack by matching her career high with five goals and logged her eighth hat trick game of the season (23rd career) to go with a pair of ground balls. Huff's five goals gives her 137 career points and moves her into a seventh-place tie with Cynthia Del Core (2014-17) for career points at USC.
- So. attacker Ella Heaney recorded her sixth hat trick of the season with three goals and reached new career highs in assists (four) and in points (seven).
- Sr. attacker Izzy McMahon scored two goals and had two assists for four points with three draw controls.
- Gr. attacker Maddie McDaniel pulled in seven draw controls and had two points on one assist and a spectacular behind-the-back goal in the first half.
- In goal, Riley Hertford posted six saves and finished the day with three caused turnovers and three ground balls.
- Defensively, Sr. Lizzy Wagner led the way with three ground balls and five draw controls. Three other players had three ground balls apiece including Sr. Natalie Byrne, Jr. Katie Ramsay, and Jr. Kaleigh Brennan. So. Olivia Dooley finished with three caused turnovers to tie Hertford for team high honors.
- For Arizona State, Kerri Clayton scored five goals and finished with eight points. Maddy Hunter added four goals and won four draw controls. Maura Cissel had eight draw controls to lead all players. Berkeley Bonneau surrendered nine goals in the first half before going out with an injury but finished with three saves in the loss.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Trojans held a small 38-34 edge in shots over the Devils and were better by five ground balls (24-19) in the win. Arizona State had a 17-15 advantage in the center circle. Despite the 49 combined turnovers and 51 total fouls in the game, only eight free position shots were attempted; three by USC and five by ASU.
- Arizona State scored the first two goals of the game in the first 75 seconds of play, but USC settled into a groove and reeled off a 6-0 run to lead by four on Huff's third goal of the day at 14:05 left in the first half.
- The Sun Devils stopped the run on a goal by Clayton, but USC scored the next three to take a 9-3 lead. Arizona State capitalized on a woman-up possession to end the first half and scored to make it a five-goal game (9-4) at the break.
- ASU scored first to open the second half, but Heaney scored back-to-back goals within 20 seconds of each other to push the Trojans in front by six at 11-5. The Devils scored the next goal, but Huff braced a goal by Heaney with two of her own to make it 14-6 with 11:16 left in regulation.
- Over the next 10:54, Arizona State mounted a furious 8-2 run with Trojan goals by freshman Claudia Shevitz and McMahon at 6:55 and 1:33 to stem the tide and prove to be the difference in USC's two-goal victory.
- USC now turns its attention to the Pac-12 Tournament set for May 5-8 at Laird Q. Cagan Stadium hosted by Stanford. The Trojans, with a second-place finish in the league standings, will receive a bye through the quarterfinals and play on Thursday (May 6) in the semifinals. The championship game is set for Saturday (May 8) at noon PT.
- USC improved to 6-1 all-time against Arizona State, and to 3-0 as the road team in the all-time series.
- The Trojans' two-goal win is the fifth game this season decided by two or fewer goals and the fifth in the last six games.
- The 30 combined goals scored by USC and Arizona State is the most in the series' history. Previously 29 (March 19, 2021).
For more information on the USC women's lacrosse team, a complete schedule, and results, please visit USCTrojans.com. Fans of the Women of Troy can follow the team on Instagram and on Twitter @USCTrojansLax.