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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Florida lacrosse draws Jacksonville rematch in round two of national championship

The Gators look to continue dancing to the Sweet 16 with a win.

Attacker Brianna Harris against Mercer. Harris leads the Gators into a second-round matchup with Jacksonville University Sunday.
Attacker Brianna Harris against Mercer. Harris leads the Gators into a second-round matchup with Jacksonville University Sunday.

Florida takes on Jacksonville University for a Sunshine State battle Sunday. Both squads cruised past their round one opponents to advance to the second round.

The Gators demolished the Mercer Bears 23-5 Friday at Donald R. Dizney Stadium. In a similar fashion, the Dolphins topped the Vanderbilt Commodores 20-12. 

Florida’s offense flourished against the Bears. The duo of attacker Brianna Harris and midfielder Shannon Kavanagh totaled 10 goals in the game.

AAC Midfielder of the Year Kavanagh won 16 draw controls, the most in a game in program history. She said she knew the orange and blue needed to come out on fire starting at the opening draw.

“Coming into the NCAA playoffs, every day could be your last,” Kavanagh said. “We’re going to be ready on Sunday.” 

Kavanagh’s next opponent, Jacksonville midfielder Megan Prescott, notched nine wins in the draw circle against Vandy.

Senior Grace Haus also applied offensive pressure with four goals for the Gators Friday. The AAC Attacker of the Year boasted an 80% shooting percentage.

For the Dolphins, attacker Sarah Elms carried the team with seven goals against the Commodores. Only five other JU players put a point on the board.

Both Jacksonville goalkeepers Dayna Martinetto and Addy Tysdal saw 30 minutes of action and recorded five saves apiece. 

Sarah Reznick will suit up on the opposite end of the field. The AAC Goalkeeper of the Year allowed only one goal during her 40 minutes between the orange pipes against Mercer. 

UF saw JU earlier this year but looks not to repeat history. The orange and blue suffered an unexpected loss to Jacksonville March 13, when the Dolphins snuck past the Gators in a hard-fought 12-11 match. 

Florida looks to defend its home turf one last time in 2021. Opening draw is set for noon at the ‘Diz and the game will stream on ESPN3.

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Karina Wilson

Karina Wilson is a second-year student at the University of Florida within the College of Journalism and Communications with a specialization in sports and media. She aims to produce engaging, accurate and current content for all types of sports fans. Currently, Karina is The Alligator's lacrosse beat writer.

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