Lacrosse extends win streak to five games, remains undefeated in GLIAC

GVL/Bo Anderson

Caitlin Wojichowski

Bo Anderson

GVL/Bo Anderson Caitlin Wojichowski

Adam Knorr

On March 24, the Grand Valley State women’s lacrosse team lost by 11 goals to Adelphi University in New York. On March 28, their losing streak reached three as they lost to Queens College 17-7. Two days later, the Lakers broke their losing streak.

They’ve been winning ever since.

GVSU came from behind on Saturday, snatching a 15-13 victory from Tiffin University, stretching their current winning streak to five. The Lakers have yet to lose since the second-to-last game of their New York trip, winning their first four games in the GLIAC.

“We’ve been playing together really well recently,” said sophomore midfielder Rachel Leibovitz. “We didn’t play together well out of conference, but going through those losses really helped us to get where we are now.”

Leibovitz was a one-woman wrecking crew for the Lakers on Saturday, scoring six goals in the contest. GVSU took an early 3-0 lead and looked to be in control of the game until Tiffin reeled off eight consecutive goals to take a commanding 8-3 lead. Leibovitz then provided a solo spark for the Laker offense, netting five goals of her own during an 8-1 GVSU run to put the Lakers up 11-9 in the second half.

“(Leibovitz) was a fireplug,” said head coach Alicia Groveston. “She was able to find her niche tonight and I have to give credit to our midfielders on their draw control. Tiffin didn’t have the ball in the first 10 minutes of the second and she was able to capitalize on her opportunities.”

After Leibovitz’s outburst, the game remained close as the Dragons quickly tied up the contest at 11 goals apiece. The Lakers were reluctant to relinquish their lead completely, as Leibovitz quickly notched her sixth goal of the night. Fellow sophomore Victoria Devine followed Leibovitz’s lead, scoring a goal of her own to the give the Lakers a 13-11 lead they would never surrender.

The comeback allowed the Lakers to remain undefeated in the GLIAC – one of their major goals for the season. Saturday’s win came just a day after GVSU’s 25-1 dominance of Alderson-Broaddus College in a game where the Lakers netted an astounding 18 first half goals. If the Lakers are able to continue their GLIAC supremacy, they will gain control of home-field advantage throughout the postseason tournament.

“We’ve played together much more,” said sophomore Meagan Emery. “We didn’t play together well out of conference, but going through those losses in New York helped us to start to play together as a team.”

With the victory, GVSU improves to 7-5 overall, taking sole position of first place in the GLIAC (4-0). Tiffin (6-7) had been previously undefeated in the GLIAC, but fell down into second place after Saturday’s loss to the Lakers. The GLIAC has begun to take shape in its inaugural year of competition, with GVSU, the overwhelming preseason favorite, standing atop the conference.

“There are a lot of new programs in the GLIAC and they’re only going to get better,” Groveston said. “As a first year team, we just need to keep pushing through and pressing on. I’m excited for both the future of the GLIAC and for what’s to come for the rest of the season.”

The Lakers play next against Walsh University at home on Friday at 7 p.m.
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