By Sam Draut–
The first ever night game at Louisville Lacrosse Stadium started slowly for the fifth-ranked U of L lacrosse team as the Cardinals fell behind Brown 2-0 in the opening nine minutes. Louisville dominated in the second half with an explosive offensive performance. Louisville (12-1) scored five goals in a six minute span in the second half and defeated Brown 14-6 Wednesday.
Kelli Gerding scored four goals and Cortnee Daley had a hat trick while Kay Morisette, Madison Hoover and Hannah Koloski each added two goals in the Cardinals final non-conference game of the regular season.
But, as coach Kellie Young has stressed to her team throughout the season, playing a complete 60 minutes is necessary for the second-place team in the ACC. The Cardinals started sluggish in the first 10 minutes, but finally found some offensive fluidity. Morissette scored on a hard charging attack one minute after Brown took a two-goal lead. Five minutes later, Gerding followed with a goal to tie to the game.
“It was not following the scout, we wanted to come out and what we considered high pressure defense on ball, sagging off ball, we didn’t accomplish that, we came out in a low pressure defense,” Young said. “It was really about the players doing what the coaches told them to do.”
Jillian Balog and Hannah Koloski scored goals in the final two minutes of the first half and Louisville took a 5-3 lead into halftime. Koloski is Cardinals leading scorer with 34 goals this season.
After the hot start, Brown kept the first half close because of strong play by goalie Victoria Holland. The freshman had seven saves on 15 shots which included a few athletic stops as Louisville advanced toward the net.
It took less than one minute for Louisville to score in the second half when Gerding picked up her second goal of the night to give the Cardinals a 6-3 lead. Four minutes later, the junior scored her third goal. The Cardinals reeled off six straight goals to take an 11-3 lead with 20 minutes left in the second half.
“We needed to be focused,” Young said. “We got greedy on the attack.”
Over 350 fans attended the inaugural night game. The Cardinals donned pink uniforms in honor of breast cancer awareness.
“It was a lot of fun, I think having a night game drew a lot of fans out for us which was fun on Wednesday night,” Young said.
The Cardinals travel to Chapel Hill, North Carolina next Saturday and face off against third-ranked North Carolina.
Photo by Sam Draut / The Louisville Cardinal