WASHINGTON, D.C. — The High Point University women’s lacrosse team led 15-3 at halftime and cruised to a 21-5 win over Howard University on Friday evening in Washington, D.C. Three HPU players recorded hat tricks, including junior Grace Gaeng who also had a game-high four assists.
“We always set goals before the game and tonight we were very good on draw controls, being more patient on offense and passing in transition,” said HPU head coach Lyndsey Boswell. “It was great to get all of our players on the field tonight. We’ll be back on the road tomorrow and we’re looking forward to taking on Detroit on Sunday.”
Gaeng posted three goals, four assists and four draw controls to lead the Panthers in the win. Sophomore midfielder Sara Kuhlman had three goals and two assists with two ground balls, two draw controls and two caused turnovers. Freshman Kendyl Gardner and sophomore Kelsy Mugele each scored three times. Sophomore attacker Mackenzie Carroll had two goals and three assists. Alexis Goldman, Alec Perry and Abby Berrettone all scored twice.
Howard was led by Jaymie Cox, who posted a hat trick and four draw controls. Cynithia Smalls scored a pair of goals while Sydney Satchell had four ground balls for the Bison.
High Point improved to 9-3 overall and 3-0 in the National Lacrosse Conference while Howard dropped to 0-9 overall and 0-3 in NLC play.
Kuhlman scored the first goal of the game on an assist from Gaeng with 26:26 to go in the first. After Howard’s Cox scored to tie it 14 seconds later, the Panthers used runs of five goals and nine goals to take a commanding lead in the first half. Goldman started both runs, getting an assist from Gaeng to make it 3-1 and scoring an unassisted goal that made it 7-2. Gaeng scored twice and had four assists in the first half.
After freshman midfielder Katie McLaughlin scored the first goal of her career, Howard won the ensuing draw and Cox streaked down the field to score, making it 15-3 at the break.
Howard’s Cox scored on a free-position shot coming out of halftime to make it 15-4, but the Panthers were able to answer right back. Berrettone scored her second goal of the game with under 26 minutes in the game and Mugele scored from the right side with just over 20 minutes left to make it 17-4. Gardner scored a free-position goal with 16 minutes left.
High Point continued to control the game in the final minutes. Kuhlman scored on the rebound of a Goldman shot to make it 20-4 with under six minutes remaining and Gaeng scored HPU’s last goal on an assist from Carroll with 4:20 remaining to make it 21-4.
Howard got one last goal, a free-position score by Small with 2:59 on the clock.
All three High Point goalies got playing time in the win. Junior Anna Wallingford started and was relieved by freshman Julia Burns with 4:49 to go in the first half. Junior goalie Lauren Hayes made her first appearance of the season midway through the second half. Wallingford earned the win as the Panthers led 13-2 when she left the game.
High Point continues its road trip, heading up to Detroit, Mich., for the first time to take on the Detroit Titans on Sunday at 1 p.m.