GVSU lacrosse outscores GLIAC opponents 44-8 in road series sweep

GVL / Kevin Sielaff – Meghan Datema (18) takes a face-off at mid-field. The Lakers take the victory over Tiffin University Friday, April 1, 2016.

GVL / Kevin Sielaff – Meghan Datema (18) takes a face-off at mid-field. The Lakers take the victory over Tiffin University Friday, April 1, 2016.

D'Angelo Starks

In early-season GLIAC action, the Grand Valley State women’s lacrosse team had quite the journey. On Friday, March 23, the team traveled to Marquette to take on Northern Michigan University, and their weekend finale in St. Paul, Minnesota, was against Concordia St. Paul on Sunday, March 25. 

GVSU walked away from the weekend with two more victories, outscoring both opponents 44-8 to improve their record to 5-2 overall (3-0 GLIAC).

In their first game of the weekend against Northern Michigan, the Lakers came out rifling off shots offensively, starting the contest on a 10-0 run. After Northern responded with their first goal, GVSU went on another run, scoring six straight unanswered goals. By halftime, GVSU was up 16-1. 

The Lakers would get back on the board only seconds into the second half, but the Wildcats would retaliate with two straight goals of their own. GVSU ended the game on a 5-0 run of their own for a 22-3 blowout victory.

Even though the Lakers captured a decisive victory, GVSU head coach Alicia Groveston knows there are certain aspects that need improvement. 

“There are just other things that we need to be more mature and crisp on moving forward,” she said. 

Meghan Datema, Maria D’Angelo and Abbi O’Neal led the way offensively for the Lakers, who saw 11 different players score goals in this game. Datema scored five goals, while D’Angelo and O’Neal each scored three. Rounding out the major offensive production was Kelly Fitzgerald, who finished with 5 points off one goal and four assists. 

The Lakers continued their scoring outburst against Concordia St. Paul. Once again, the Lakers opened the contest on a 5-0 run. After a handful of goals back and forth, GVSU ended the first half with four straight goals to take a 13-3 lead into the half. 

The second half was one of the same. The Lakers scored the first four goals of the second half before Concordia retaliated with one goal. After another burst of scoring from GVSU, the Lakers walked away from the road trip with a 22-5 victory. 

The scoring for the Lakers was spread out across the board with 11 different players scoring goals in this game also. Meggan Loyd, Erika Neumen and Ashley Bailey were the leaders in this game. Loyd finished with five goals, Neumen scored three and Bailey scored three also. 

It takes a lot more than talent to outscore two conference opponents 44-8. Groveston believes her team’s success is a result of the players coming together.

“I think they played as a unit, and I think they trusted themselves and relied on each other. For the first time, it wasn’t about individual performances,” Groveston said. “It was very much collectively about how can we win together. Overall, I think it was a great weekend in confidence in our play and in each other.”

Big wins like this can help build confidence for the team moving forward, especially as the schedule gets tougher.

The Lakers will finally play at home for the first time all season against Indianapolis on Thursday, March 29, and McKendree on Saturday, March 31, at the GVSU lacrosse/track and field stadium.