BLACKSBURG, Va. – The Virginia Tech women’s lacrosse team honored its two seniors, Rachel Culp and Kari Morrison, before the match, but a freshman proved to be the difference maker as Jessica Nonn netted the sudden victory game-winner for the Hokies. With the goal, Tech defeated the visiting Old Dominion Lady Monarchs 11-10 in a non-conference match on Saturday afternoon at Thompson Field.
The Hokies ended a three-game skid with the win and improved to 5-7 on the year (1-3 ACC). Old Dominion suffered only its second setback of the season and fell to 5-2 overall (0-0 CAA).
The match began much like it ended, with a goal from Nonn (Fr.,Catonsville, Md.). The rookie scored her first goal of the day four minutes into the game and notched her second and third scores, both assisted by Dylan Garner (Cornelius, N.C.), before 10 minutes had elapsed in the first half.
Despite the 3-0 deficit, Old Dominion would claw its way back by scoring three unanswered goals in the next 15 minutes. The Hokies’ Caitlyn Wier (So., Cockeysville, Md.) broke the 3-3 tie at the 7:05 mark on an unassisted goal. Neither team would score in the final minutes of the first half and Tech took a slim 4-3 lead into the intermission.
Virginia’s Tech one-goal lead was quickly erased as the Lady Monarchs pulled ahead with another 3-0 run to open the second frame. Liz Carpenter (So., Lewes, Del.) stopped the bleeding with a goal at the 19:23 mark, assisted again by Garner, but ODU re-established a two-goal advantage a minute later and led 7-5 with 18 minutes to play.
The Tech attack came alive and reeled off four straight goals over a nine-minute span to reclaim the lead with nine minutes to play. However, the back-and-forth match continued as Old Dominion responded with two goals and tied the game with 6:16 remaining.
A Hokie turnover gave Old Dominion possession and the Lady Monarchs ran almost five minutes off the clock before Sam Voelker (So., Timonium, Md.) collected an ODU turnover and diffused the threat.
Tied 9-9 at the end of regulation, the two teams prepared for overtime. Allie Emala (So., Baltimore, Md.) won the draw control for the Hokies, which led to a Rachel Culp (Sr., Kent, Ohio) goal 25 seconds into the first overtime. The score was Culp’s second of the game and 100th of the career. Tech’s senior midfielder became just the sixth Hokie to reach the 100-goal plateau.
Once again, the Lady Monarchs would tie the game. Knotted at 10-all, the two squads battled to a stalemate through the remaining five minutes of overtime and readied for a sudden-victory second overtime period.
Katie Rotanz (So., Salem, Va.) picked up the draw control to start the second extra session, put the ball in Culp’s hands and the senior midfielder found Nonn slashing through the middle for the game-winner a mere 21 seconds into the second overtime.
Nonn would lead all scorers with four goals on the day, followed closely by Culp with two goals and two assists, Garner with a goal and three assists, and Emala with two goals. Kari Morrison (Sr., Springfield, Va.) anchored the defense and made eight saves on the afternoon.
Virginia Tech has the chance to recover with a week off before traveling to American University on Saturday, April 4 for a match slated to start at 1 p.m.
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