DENVER, CO (NEWS10) — UAlbany’s season ends at #5 Denver in a tightly-contested NCAA Second-Round match against the Pioneers, 8-6.
- Sarah Falk scored each of UAlbany’s first four goals
- Katie Pascale recorded three assists
- Grace Cincebox recorded 14 saves, including eight in the first half, and six on free-position shots
- Denver outshot UAlbany 25-18, and took 22 shots on goal to UAlbany’s 12
- Denver won 24 ground balls to UAlbany’s 14
- Denver won 11 of 16 draws
- Eleven yellow cards were assessed during the game
Head Coach Katie Thomson: “I want to express my appreciation for the team and all of their hard work and dedication to the program this season, and to my staff, Taylor and Leah, who are just so loyal and committed friends and coaches. They did an incredible job all season long and I’m just so proud to work by their side. This was such a great effort by our team. A remarkable year and a remarkable run. Denver is a really talented team and we thought we fought really hard against them today.”
How it Happened
- For the first time since the 2011 season, the University at Albany women’s lacrosse program played a second game in a single NCAA Tournament after upsetting #12 Virginia in the First Round, 16-14. Their opponent was five-seed Denver, who was the last unbeaten team in Division I at 20-0.
- The Great Danes reached the Second Round by erasing a seven-goal deficit against the Cavaliers to win by two. Katie Pascale and Sarah Falk each scored seven points, with Pascale scoring four goals with three assists and Falk scoring seven goals. All seven of Falk’s goals were scored in the second half, leading the Great Danes to outscore the Cavaliers 13-7 in the second 30 minutes.
- Denver outlasted USC 10-7 in Friday’s early game. The Pioneers jumped out to a 6-1 lead in the first half but saw the Trojans claw back to tie the game at six by the end of the third quarter. Denver regrouped, however, to outscore USC 4-1 in the fourth claim the victory. In 20 games this season, Denver, who leads the nation in scoring defense, had not allowed an opponent to score more than nine goals. By contrast, UAlbany had only been held to single-digits twice, and not since March 1 at then-#2 Syracuse.
- Nearly six minutes elapsed before either team scored. Denver hit the post on an early free-position attempt, and their best early scoring chance from the field came with 10 minutes remaining in the first quarter. Freshman goalkeeper Grace Cincebox made a point-blank stop to keep the Pioneers off the board. Denver collected the rebound and scored on the same possession, 43 seconds later, to take a 1-0 lead.
- With 8:02 on the clock, Denver drew another free-position attempt. The Pioneers passed out of the attempt and scored to go up 2-0. The Pioneers went up 3-0 with 6:25 in the first on a transition goal after the Great Danes turned the ball over on a clear.
- Katie Pascale found Sarah Falk with 4:02 left in the first to put UAlbany on the board. The goal came right after Cincebox made another save, her fourth of the quarter, on Denver’s previous possession.
- Falk scored on a free-position attempt with 15 seconds left in the first to cut Denver’s lead to one. Less than 10 seconds later, after Jill Alberici won the ensuing draw, Falk scored her third to tie the game at three.
- After Denver scored to go up 4-3, Cincebox made another point-blank save on a free-position attempt, her eighth save of the first half.
- Late in the second quarter, Denver and UAlbany each were assessed two yellow cards, over the course of three in-game minutes.
- Falk scored with 2:03 left in the second quarter, her fourth of the game, on a free-position, to tie the game at four. Neither team scored for the remainder of the first half.
- Cincebox started the third quarter making another save on a free-position attempt, and then a second on the rebound, leading to a transition opportunity for UAlbany.
- With 11:00 left in the third, Pascale set up Grace McCauley to put UAlbany up 5-4 and give the Great Danes their first lead of the game. Denver tied the game at five with 5:31 left in the quarter, and retook the lead, 6-5, with 3:37 on the clock.
- Denver scored on a buzzer-beater to end the third after forcing a turnover on a UAlbany clear deep in Great Dane territory, to take a two-goal lead heading into the fourth.
- Haley Phalines ended UAlbany’s scoring drought off a setup from Pascale to close within two with 5:32 remaining. It was the first goal of Phalines’ career.
- Neither team scored for the remainder of the game, giving Denver an 8-6 victory. Falk finished with four goals, and Pascale with three assists. Cincebox closed the game with 14 saves in net.