Georgia Club Lax Teams Crush Competition on a Superb Saturday

Both Georgia club lacrosse teams were in action on Saturday, and, between them, the Bulldog men and women carded a trio of victories in as many tries, tallying all three triumphs by double-digit margins. The freewheeling fun was easy to follow, as both teams’ adventures were reported faithfully on their respective Twitter feeds, but here is a quick recap of yesterday’s contests for those of you who were not there to track it live:

After opening their season with a win, the Georgia women’s lacrosse team played a double-header in Atlanta with alumnae Cat Brown, Murphy Ferguson, Melissa Moore, and Callie Wheatley in the house. (Wheatley was present not merely as a spectator, but also as a coach for her alma mater.) The opening outing against Georgia Tech began with a score for the good gals when junior attack Arden Birdwell made it 1-0 for the visitors.

The Red and Black built up a 4-0 edge before the Yellow Jackets notched their initial goal. Senior defender and team captain Brooks Leavell demonstrated a knack for claiming custody of the ball that kept the possessions headed in the correct direction, while senior attack and fellow captain Jenna Dreyer continued to prove rock-solid on free position shots. Another senior attack, Parisa Ayers, fooled her Georgia Tech counterpart on a fake and found the back of the net on a rush from behind the goal, proving once again that students at the Institute aren’t smarter than matriculants at the University, and the Engineers responded by clanging a shot off of the post.

Though both goalies made multiple saves, the Athenians held a 9-1 halftime lead and the visitors’ defense was stout; late in the contest, the Yellow Jackets had taken only three shots on goal all afternoon. A late Georgia turnover allowed Georgia Tech to narrow the gap before sophomore attack Gaby Lohner notched the last goal to make the final margin 16-2.

The Bulldogs’ second showdown, against Tennessee, also got off to an auspicious start, as junior midfielder and team captain Tali Brennan controlled the draw and Dreyer found the back of the net on a roll from the left. Subsequent goals by Birdwell on a scoop and score, by Ayers and junior attack Mady Katz on an exchange of assists, and by junior midfielder Cassidy Sauvageau following a steal by sophomore goalie Caroline Youngs gave the Red and Black a 5-0 advantage.

Additional scores by Sauvageau and Ayers (twice), followed by a free position shot by sophomore midfielder Nilla Paine, extended the Athenians’ lead to nine, and the Bulldogs continued to pour it on, building up a 13-0 advantage by halftime. After intermission, Georgia purposely was patient on its possessions, opting to pass rather than shoot and burn up clock along the way to a 15-0 victory. Lohner, incidentally, scored the final goal of the second game, as well.

Later, at the intramural fields in the Classic City, the Georgia men’s lacrosse team opened its campaign against Georgia Southern yesterday evening. Senior midfielder and team captain George Walker swiftly put the Bulldogs out in front with the season’s opening goal, reportedly without so much as mussing his hair. Back-to-back scores by freshman midfielder Cory Phillips aided the Red and Black’s cause as they moved out in front, 7-1, at the end of the first quarter. Second-period scores by sophomore attack David "Lassie" Olson and the still immaculately-coiffed Walker paved the way to an 11-1 lead at the break.

The Eagles narrowed the Bulldogs’ edge to seven in an explosive third stanza, but Walker drove the lane to make it a 12-4 contest and the upperclassman continued to provoke pride among men with good hair everywhere in Bulldog Nation by stinging the top left corner to extend the final margin to 16-6.

On Valentine’s Day weekend, the ladies will be in Santa Barbara for West Coast tournament dates with UCSB, Pittsburgh, Santa Clara, and UCLA, while the gentlemen will host conference rival Clemson at the club sports complex in Athens at 7:30 next Friday night. Be there if you can, and track the teams on Twitter if you can’t. Either way, we’ll be back with your weekly lacrosse report next weekend.

Oh, and, if you can go, take snacks, please. These young men and women are working hard out there, so a little sustenance during and between games isn’t much to ask.

Go ‘Dawgs!

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