Molloy jumped out to a 7-0 lead before the Wilmington University women's lacrosse team got on the board, leading to a 16-9 nonconference victory for Molloy on Friday night at the Dean G. Skelos Sports Complex.
The Wildcats (2-6 overall) matched the Golden Lions (4-4 overall) in everything but the scoreboard, grabbing more ground balls (16-13), taking more free position shots (7-2), and turning the ball over less (17-19), but could only convert on nine of 30 shot opportunities for the contest.
Trailing 8-1 halfway through the first half, the Wildcats went on a 4-2 spurt at the end of the half, getting two goals from Rebekah McCurry, and single goals from Sara LeBrun and Megan Keffer. Keffer's mark came with two seconds left in the first half, bringing the Wildcats to within five at 10-5.
But the Golden Lions started hot again in the second half, scoring the first five goals of the frame to extend the lead out to 15-5 with 15:30 to play. LeBrun started a string of three straight goals for the Wildcats while McCurry tallied back-to-back goals to pull to within 15-8, but with only 2:57 to play.
The teams traded goals in the final two minutes of play, as Gabby Spalt got on the board with a goal with 1:12 remaining in the contest. Keffer had an opportunity to give the Wildcats double-digit with 34 seconds to play, but the Lions' netminder Laura Vetter made the stop to keep it at 16-9.
The Golden Lions narrowly outshot the Wildcats, 31-30, for the game while also gaining more draw controls, 15-11. Wilmington converted on 15-of-19 clear attempts but Vetter recorded 14 saves while Wilmington goalkeeper Corinne Dries made 12 stops for the game.
McCurry led the Wildcats with four goals and five draw controls while LeBrun added three goals. Keffer and Spalt capped the Wilmington scoring with a goal each while Keffer added two ground balls and two draws. Maddie Hewitt picked up three ground balls and added two draws.
The Wildcats have a shot to get back in the win column quickly on Saturday, as they head to Post on the quick turnaround. They return to Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference action at LaMoy field with a 1 p.m. start in Waterbury, Conn.