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Friday, June 14, 2024

Gators lacrosse crowned 2024 AAC Champions

No. 9 Florida lacrosse took down the James Madison Dukes in the AAC Championship Saturday

Gators lacrosse senior attacker Maggi Hall calls for a play in the team's win over Old Dominion University on Saturday, March 23, 2024.
Gators lacrosse senior attacker Maggi Hall calls for a play in the team's win over Old Dominion University on Saturday, March 23, 2024.

The No. 9 Florida lacrosse team (17-2) experienced deja vu Saturday after defeating 18th-ranked James Madison (13-5) 21-11 in the American Athletic Conference Championship for the second year in a row.

Last year, the teams played in Philadelphia where the Gators took home the AAC Tournament trophy after narrowly defeating James Madison 9-8.

Florida is riding its longest winning streak in program history at 17 straight wins. The Gators also recorded a perfect conference season, winning all eight AAC matchups. 

The Gators never fell behind JMU during the contest. In the second quarter, JMU sophomore attacker Maddie Epke scored, tying the score 6-6. Florida responded with three back-to-back goals to regain its lead. 

Eight Gators scored in the matchup, four of which recorded hat tricks.

Senior attacker Maggi Hall scored twice in the second quarter, twice in the third quarter and once in the fourth quarter. 

Graduate student midfielder Emily Heller scored the first two goals of the game and capped off her impressive performance in the third quarter with a hat trick. 

Senior attacker Ashley Gonzalez recorded a hat trick after scoring in the first quarter, second quarter and twice in the fourth quarter. 

Senior attacker Danielle Pavinelli had a goal in the first quarter and two in the fourth quarter. 

Redshirt sophomore goalkeeper Elyse Finnelle recorded a save percentage of .522 after facing 23 shots on goal. 

The Gators had 29 shots on goal. UF finished with 10 turnovers, compared to JMU’s six. 

The selection show for the NCAA D1 Women’s Lacrosse Championship will air on ESPN2 Sunday at 9 p.m. Florida could be one of the higher seeds in the tournament out of the 29 teams that will compete in the championship bracket of the single-elimination tournament. 

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The first round of the tournament will take place Friday. Locations haven’t been determined as of Saturday evening.

Contact Lacey Rogers at lrogers@alligator.org. Follow her on X @laceyyrog.

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Lacey Rogers

Lacey Rogers is a third-year journalism major and sports reporter for The Alligator. She is a huge Washington Capitals fan and hopes to work for them after she finishes school.


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