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Florida lacrosse player Danielle Pavinelli (10). [Photo courtesy of Hannah White.]

Florida Lacrosse Falls to James Madison in Conference Play

The number eight Florida lacrosse team played its fourth consecutive Top-10 match up against number seven James Madison on Saturday afternoon. The final score was 14-9 from Sentara Park in Harrisonburg, Virginia and with the loss, the Gators come home 5-3 on the season.

First Half

The first round of the American Athletic Conference play was packed with intensity. Both teams played aggressively in the first frame with an even draw control. Emma LoPinto scored two consecutive goals despite the Dukes owning the first net of the game. Danielle Pavinelli added a goal to help the Gators take the lead 3-2.

It was back and forth between the two teams as two penalties by the Gators helped the Dukes score but the Gators responded with four unanswered goals to snag its largest lead 7-4. But James Madison added three goals to tie the game at the half. Notably, Ashley Gonzales became Florida’s 22nd 100-point scorer following her assist to Emma LoPinto.

Second Half

The Gators took control of the draw in the third quarter 6-0 but were outscored by one goal. Florida saw its first goal from Emma Heller in a free position shot. Soon after, James Madison answered with a goal to tie the game. Florida’s Madison Waters then scored an unassisted goal to shift the lead 9-8. James Madison went on to hold the Gators scoreless while on their two goal run to close the third frame up 10-9.

The fourth quarter was tough for the Gators. They didn’t score a single goal and added extra three penalties to finish with a total of six. The James Madison Dukes closed out the game 14-9 as they secured their first ever American Athletic Conference win.

What’s Next?

The Florida lacrosse team will take another trip up the road to Macon, Georgia to face off against the Mercer Bears on Wednesday. Opening draw is slated for 3 p.m.

About Sarah Zephir

Sarah is a senior public relations major in the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida. You can reach Sarah by email at Sarahzephir@ufl.edu.

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