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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

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Wednesday, the No. 14 Gators overcame a mid-game ejection and a

manic defense to score their first victory over a top-10 team,

beating No. 9 Georgetown 17-10.

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With a five-goal cushion and just 18 seconds left before halftime,

Florida’s leading scorer, Kitty Cullen, was ejected from the game

for her second yellow card due to slashing.

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The sophomore midfielder already had four goals on the night,

sparking the Gators’ offense early by using her speed to negate

Georgetown’s (0-2) trapping defense.

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“When you lose someone of Kitty’s caliber of course you’re

nervous,” UF coach Amanda O’Leary said. “But we know that we have

people on this team, that if a situation like that arises, that

they know they have to step up.”

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Without Cullen in the lineup, Florida’s attack stagnated for the

first eight minutes of the second half, allowing the Hoyas to

narrow UF’s 10-5 lead with two free position goals. 

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Florida (5-1) had seen Georgetown’s defense of double teams and

constant on-ball pressure beforehand in practice though. Both of

the Gators’ assistant coaches, Erica Lagrow and Caitlyn McFadden,

play for the USA national team helmed by Hoyas coach Ricky

Fried.

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Sophomores Brittany Dashiell and Caroline Cochran eventually

adjusted and combined for five goals in the second half. They

scored three consecutive goals in under five minutes, helping

extend Florida’s lead to seven.

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“We have speed on our team, so we can just run by the double and

find the backside to get the open player,” Dashiell said.

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After Cochran’s second goal of night with 17:35 left to play, the

game was delayed for an hour due to rain and lightning. The Gators

left the field to wait out the down pour yelling and celebrating,

while the visitors trod off quietly.

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“Just with all of the different scenarios and everything that went

on, it made it even better for a win,” Cochran said. “We were all

pumped in the locker room. We were all cheering and screaming to

stay pumped up.”

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Florida next game is Saturday at 1 p.m. against Temple (1-3).

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