Special report on the Florida Gators lacrosse team:
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Junior Sammi Burgess led the Gators with a career-tying four goals and seniors Nicole Graziano and Devon Schneider chipped in two each, but Florida’s defense went to work Friday night in a 13-5 win against No. 14 Boston College to highlight the Gators’ fifth top-15 win of the season.
Florida, now an undefeated 8-0 in 2016, notched its first win against BC in the first meeting ever between the two programs. The Gators found themselves extensively in their defensive half as the Eagles (4-3) tried to slow down the game — including a seven-minute BC possession to start the second half — but the Orange and Blue were up for the challenge defensively, and capitalized in transition offensively with eight different scorers.
Junior Taylor Bresnahan forced two Boston College turnovers to highlight the night for the defense, while classmate Caroline Fitzgerald fought for a team-high three ground balls for the Gators. Senior keeper Mary-Sean Wilcox was steady as always to pick up her eighth win of the campaign, but freshman Haley Hicklen turned away an impressive four BC shots in just 5:31 of play to end the game.
After a back-and-forth battle in the first period, the Gators took a 6-4 lead into the locker room at the half, but put the pedal to the metal in the second, outscoring the Eagles 7-1 to close it out. Seven different Gators scored in the second period, highlighted by freshman Madi Hall’s second career goal.
The Gators return to The Diz Monday for a 6:30 p.m. clash with No. 18 Towson to continue a five-game home stand.
No. 3 Florida: 7-0
No. 14 Boston College: 4-3
NUMBERS OF NOTE
64: wins for Florida all-time at The Diz with Friday’s 13-5 victory over Boston College
14: straight games with at least one save for senior goalkeeper Mary-Sean Wilcox, who had three against the Eagles
12: consecutive games with a point for junior Sammi Burgess, who led UF’s scoring efforts with a career-tying four goals
8: different Gators found the back of the net for the Orange and Blue Friday — and three UF freshmen scored: Madi Hall, Sydney Pirreca and Lindsey Ronbeck
5: ranked wins for the Orange and Blue on the season. The Gators will get another shot at a top-20 win Monday when No. 18 Towson comes to town
4: career-tying saves for freshman Haley Hicklen, who closed out the last 5:31 of Friday’s tilt
3: games senior Nicole Graziano has registered four or more draw controls this season. Graziano picked up four against BC after registering five in UF’s win at No. 10 Stony Brook last Sunday. She also scooped up four against Dartmouth
“Give Boston College credit, they came in with a great offensive game plan. We responded well in the second half and put the necessary goals on the board to come away with a win tonight. We switched up our defense in the second half, let them come to us and we were successful offensively in transition. We are 8-0, but we still need to keep improving. Playing this type of competition will certainly help us with that, and we’ll get back to work tomorrow. We have a quick turnaround and will face another great team in Towson Monday.”
Florida will host No. 18 Towson at 6:30 p.m. Monday (March 14) and will be without junior Mollie Stevens, who was issued a red card in Friday’s BC game. Following Monday’s game, it will likely be a No. 1 Maryland vs. No. 2 Florida clash March 19 at the Diz when the Terps come to town next Saturday.
NO. 3 FLORIDA VS. NO. 18 TOWSON
Towson Tigers (March 14) | Florida vs. No. 14 BC / No. 18 Towson Game Notes
Time: 6:30 pm (ET)
TV: SEC Network +
Radio: ESPN Gainesville
Live Stats: Sidearm Stats
Florida opens BIG EAST play March 26 against Vanderbilt and hosts Temple (4/2) before hitting the road to Georgetown April 9.