Source credited to UAA Photography

Gators Lacrosse Opens Season at No. 17 Colorado

The No. 6 Gators lacrosse team begins their 2019 season this Saturday, February 9, in Colorado as they take on the No. 17 Colorado Buffaloes.

In 2018, Florida finished with overall 17-4 record and were crowned Big East Conference Champions after going undefeated in conference play.

The Move

For the past four seasons the Gators have dominated the Big East Conference. Since joining the conference in 2015, Florida has gone 31-1 against conference opponents and earned four consecutive Big East Conference Championships.

The American Athletic Conference added women’s lacrosse starting in the 2019 season. Additionally, Florida’s new conference opponents include Cincinnati, Connecticut, East Carolina, Temple, and Vanderbilt.

Florida lacrosse head coach Amanda O’Leary said the move to the American Athletic conference gives her team the ability to play more out of conference opponents.

Key Players

Offensively Florida is led by senior attacker Lindsey Ronbeck who averaged 3.61 goals per game in 2018. Ronbeck was the Gators leading scorer last season with 65 goals.

Senior midfielder Sydney Pirreca finished the 2018 season with 53 goals, 25 ground balls and 49 draw controls.

Defensively the Gators are led by senior goalie Halley Hicklen and junior defender Cara Trombetta. In 2018, Hicklen set the Florida single-season record with 178 saves.

Coach O’Leary expressed the high expectations for her team with the large amount of returning players.

Also, despite both offensive and defensive returners O’Leary expects freshman to see significant playing time. Furthermore, Florida’s roster contains 13 freshman including attack Hannah Mardiney who won the ALL-USA Girls Lacrosse Player of the Year in 2018.

Colorado

Florida’s last meeting with Colorado in the second round of 2018 NCAA tournament resulted in a 13-9 Gator victory and NCAA quarterfinal berth. Meanwhile, Colorado has a strong defense led by 2018 IWLCA Goalkeeper of the Year Julia Lisella. She led the PAC 12 with a 50.3 save percentage in 2018.

 

Offensively the Buffs are led by senior attacker Miranda Stinson. Stinson scored 58 goals, 19 assists, and 34 groundballs in the 2018 season.

How to Watch

Florida’s match-up against Colorado will take place on Saturday, February 9, at 2 p.m. Catch the live stream of Saturday’s lacrosse game here.

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