In women’s lacrosse, two yellow cards get you kicked out for the rest of the game. For the Stony Brook women’s lacrosse team, senior attacker Kylie Ohlmiller received her second yellow card and had to sit out the last 25 minutes of the game with her team up 13-7.
However, her teammates and coaches didn’t fret when the best player on the team, possibly in the nation, was forced to sit.
“The character of this team stepped up,” head coach Joe Spallina said. “I thought we showed people why we’re the number one team in the country. We have the number one player in the country, and we have the number one team in the country.”
The Seawolves used an 8-0 first-half run and a 7-0 run in the second half to hold off the No. 16 Penn State Nittany Lions 21-13 Tuesday afternoon at Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium.
Many Seawolves stepped up in the absence of Ohlmiller. Both redshirt-senior attacker Courtney Murphy and sophomore attacker Taryn Ohlmiller recorded a team-high eight points. Senior midfielder Samantha DiSalvo had a big day, scoring a career-high six goals with one assist for seven points.
“I haven’t been playing my best offensively and I was able to finish, which I haven’t been able to do in the past few games,” DiSalvo said. “It was great, and definitely having coach push us in practice this week helped me.”
Junior midfielder Keri McCarthy scored three goals and had an assist, but her biggest accomplishment of the day came in the draw circle. She won 12 draws, with her second draw control of the day breaking the program record for most draw controls in a season that was also set by McCarthy last season.
“I think we really executed there today,” McCarthy said. “The draw is a huge focus every day in practice. When things weren’t working and things got rough, we brought it in and figured it out.”
Taryn Ohlmiller took over her sister’s position after Kylie Ohlmiller got her second yellow card. The sophomore stood behind the net, waiting for her teammates to cut toward the goal. If no one was open, she would go to the net herself. She scored three goals and tied Kylie Ohlmiller with five assists on the day.
“We made it so we didn’t have to change our game plan that much,” Taryn Ohlmiller said. “We had to change a few things up top, but it didn’t change the way we were playing on both sides of the field. I think that looks great for our team.”
This was the final ranked team Stony Brook will face until the NCAA tournament. Spallina saw this game as a final tune-up for the tournament, as this was the third game in nine contests that were against a non-America East opponent.
“I thought this was a great test for our squad in a lot of different ways,” Spallina said. “For us to beat a nationally-ranked opponent that has been in the Final Four each of the last two years, it says a lot about our group. We showed the ability tonight to beat teams in different ways with different people, and I thought our players stepped up and showed that we’re a full group.”
Stony Brook will travel to Albany for the final game of the regular season. The winner of the game will get the No. 1 seed in the America East tournament and will host the conference tournament as well. The game is set for Saturday, April 28 at 12 p.m.