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April 20, 2012
Durham, N.C. (theACC.com) - The Maryland women’s lacrosse team (14-3) defeated Virginia Tech 15-7 in the ACC Championship quarterfinals on Friday. In all, 24 of the 29 student-athletes on the roster saw action as Maryland, seeking to become the first team to win this event in four straight years, moved on to face Duke in Saturday’s 3 p.m. semifinal.
“Definitely a nice thing on a day like today,” said Terps coach Cathy Reese, referring to playing many members of her roster in the 75-degree temperatures and humidity at Duke University’s Koskinen Stadium. “This is probably the warmest weather we’ve competed in this season and knowing that this is a tournament and we’d have to play tomorrow if we were victorious today.”
Alex Aust tied a tournament record with five assists, the last of which came just 21 seconds into the second half, to pace a Terrapin attack that moved the ball and kept the Hokies off balance most of the day. Karri Ellen Johnson, who earlier in the week became one of the first two players in ACC history to earn all-conference honors in four seasons, delivered four goals and junior Katie Schwarzmann, who has three all-league citations of her own, found the net three times.
The Hokies hung with Maryland early, playing the first 12 minutes to a 3-3 draw. While Reese suggested her team wasn’t especially charged up, Johnson said Maryland didn’t feel complacent.
“Never,” she said. “Each game is a game that we take pride in. We step out and are ready to play.”
After a media time out midway through the first half, the Terrapins went on a 7-1 run that featured one of Aust’s feeds and two of Schwarzmann’s goals. They were then in position to play conservative lacrosse in the second half.
The Hokies (9-7) displayed considerable improvement this season. That was highlighted by an overtime win over Virginia on April 7. Players who accounted for six of Tech’s seven goals are expected to return in 2013; that group is highlighted by freshman Megan Will, who scored three times on the Terps.
“I’m definitely starting to see the gap close,” coach Megan Burker said. “Consistency – both game to game and year to year – is what’s going to make the mark in the end.”