A change of scenery can be beneficial.
It provokes a change in attitude and routine, which is exactly what Florida’s women’s lacrosse team needed after playing three Maryland-based teams in 16 days.
The Gators defeated Elon 15-5 at Rudd Field in North Carolina on Thursday to snap their three game losing streak.
UF (2-3) recorded its second win of the season and first since defeating then-No. 17 Colorado by:
Changing the Lineup
Coach Amanda O’Leary made an alteration to Florida’s starting lineup for its game against the Phoenix.
She replaced sophomore attacker Grace Haus, who had started every game of the season, with sophomore attacker Kassidy Bresnahan.
Haus came into Thursday’s game with eight goals in four starts, while Bresnahan had only one goal in two starts.
This was Bresnahan’s first start since the game against Maryland on Feb. 14 in which she recorded zero points.
Freshman attacker Hannah Mardiney took Bresnahan’s place in the starting 12 for the following game against Loyola on Feb. 23.
In Thursday’s game, Bresnahan started alongside Mardiney, while Haus provided a spark off the bench.
Haus scored twice in a span of 21 seconds in the first half to put the Gators up 7-2. Bresnahan tallied her third assist of the season on Haus’ second goal.
With 10 goals in five appearances, Haus is UF’s third-leading goalscorer behind senior attacker Lindsey Ronbeck (21) and sophomore midfielder Shannon Kavanagh (12).
Dominating the Draw
Florida’s performance in the draw circle is essential to the team’s success.
The Gators controlled the draw 14 times to Colorado’s 12 in the season opener, helping them to their first win of the season.
However, they were outmatched in the draw circle against Maryland, Loyola and Navy. This gave the opposing team more goal-scoring opportunities, which resulted in three straight losses for the Orange and Blue.
UF was in command of the draw against Elon, though, winning it 17-5.
Sophomore defender Sabrina Cristodero led the way with seven draw controls, while Kavanagh, Florida’s primary draw taker, registered four.
O’Leary has emphasized the importance of the draw control throughout the season to her players because of the effect it has on every aspect of the game, and Thursday’s much-needed victory was a testament to that.
“We really came together for an all-around solid win tonight,” O’Leary said in a release. “Our control in the draw circle was fantastic and our defense stepped up and allowed our offense to be successful.”
Follow Bryan Matamoros on Twitter @bmatamoros_ and contact him at email@example.com.
Sophomore attacker Grace Haus started every game this season before coming off the bench in the Gators 15-5 win against Elon on Thursday. She scored twice.