It looked as if freshman Kylie Ohlmiller scored her first career goal in Stony Brook’s women’s lacrosse season-opener a week ago against USC. The referees thought otherwise, based on an illegal stick call.
She left no doubt when the Seawolves beat Drexel 8-4 on a sunny Saturday afternoon at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium, putting her name in the goals column for the first time at 16:05 of the second half and kickstarting what Head Coach Joe Spallina has said will be a memorable career.
“Awesome.” That was what came to Ohlmiller’s mind first when thinking about getting to see one of her shots hit the back of the net for the very first time.
“I definitely missed that opportunity the first game,” Ohlmiller said. “It’s pretty cool now.”
She was cool in scoring the goal as well, taking a pass from fellow freshman Samantha DiSalvo off of a free-position attempt, faking the shot and than burying it. When many young student-athletes may be anxious to score their first, Ohlmiller was mature beyond her years.
“I try to not think about it, just leave it in the past, just move on and try to get the next one,” the West Islip, N.Y. native said.
Ohlmiller did more than just score for the first time in college, however, feeding DiSalvo and sophomore Courtney Murphy for goals of their own.
In fact, DiSalvo joined the first-timers party, as her shot just 3:05 into the contest earned her first career goal as well.
Murphy continued the trend that she has set throughout her young career by leading the team in goals. The Shirely, N.Y. native paced the team and freshmen throughout the country in scoring last season, led the Seawolves with two against USC, and notched three goals on Saturday.
Classmate Dorrien Van Dyke got in on the action as well, putting the game away in its waning moments by scoring her third of the season with 1:41 remaining.
Sophomore goaltender Kaitlyn Leahy kept the Seawolves ahead in the win, looking comfortable in her second career start. She made seven saves on the game, including fending off four of the five free-position shots that she faced. It did not hurt that the always-swarming Stony Brook defense not only forced 20 turnovers, 11 in the second half, but it was perfect on their 17 clear attempts against the Dragons.
“We played great defense,” Spallina said, while not all too happy about his team committing 41 fouls on the game. “The thing that bothers me more is the 15 turnovers.”
After controlling play with dominant defense in the first half, the Seawolves played even ball with Drexel in the second.
“You can’t turn the ball over like that,” Spallina said about 10 second-half turnovers. “You’ve got to be able to score more efficiently.”
“Defensively, I think we’re showing signs of being a championship caliber defense,” Spallina said, more concerned with the other side of the ball. “Once we figure out the offensive side a little bit better, I think we’ll be a force to be reckoned with.”
Only two games in, Stony Brook has plenty of time to figure that out. The Seawolves face Villanova on Saturday.