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JMU roundup: Dukes pick up CAA women's lacrosse win


Daily Staff Reports - sports@nvdaily.com

HARRISONBURG -- No. 19 James Madison held Delaware scoreless in the second half en route to an 8-4 women's lacrosse win in Colonial Athletic Association action Friday evening at University Park.

JMU improved to 7-4 overall and 2-0 in league play. Delaware is 6-5 overall and 0-2 against CAA teams.

The Dukes outscored the Blue Hens 4-0 in the second half, breaking a 4-4 halftime tie by tallying four goals on only five shots in the period. Delaware had seven attempts to score in the second period, but JMU sophomore goalkeeper Schylar Healy turned away five of them. One Blue Hen second-half shot hit the post, and another was wide of the mark.

JMU sophomore Steph Finley tallied JMU's first goal of the second period, on a free-position attempt just 2:32 into the half. Redshirt senior Casey Ancarrow fired a shot into the goal with 11:27 left to push the Dukes' advantage to 6-4.

After Delaware controlled the ensuing draw, Healy made a stop on a shot by sophomore Caitlin McCartney with 10:46 left. JMU gained possession but lost the ball seconds later. However, several minutes later Dukes sophomore Hannah Verschoore caused a turnover, giving JMU the ball with 6:19 to play.

JMU maintained possession and did not take a shot until junior Amy Roguski sent the ball past Blue Hen sophomore goalkeeper Alex Zaugra with 25 seconds to play. Then senior Nicole Stiles controlled the draw and scored the final goal with just three seconds on the clock.

JMU got balanced scoring, with freshman Jaci Gordon scoring twice and six other Dukes netting a single goal. Delaware's four scores came from four players.

In the opening half, JMU scored three times in the first eight minutes, getting goals from redshirt senior Rebecca McLouth just 27 seconds into the game and another from sophomore Ali Curwin 6:45 into the match. The third goal came from Gordon 7:54 into the game.

Delaware junior Chelsea Fay got the Blue Hens on the scoreboard 9:45 into the match, but a Gordon goal 15:56 in put the Dukes again up by three, 4-1.

However, Delaware scored three times in the final 12:38 while holding JMU scoreless to send the game into intermission tied at 4. Junior Shannon Burns scored off a pass from McCartney at 12:38, then McCartney scored an unassisted goal with 5:16 remaining. Freshman McKenzie Rafferty netted the tying goal with 2:47 left in the half.

JMU senior Amanda Mathews had a game-high four ground balls, and senior Kelsey MacDonald and Healy each finished with three ground balls. Stiles led all players with four draw controls, and Curwin led JMU with two caused turnovers.

For the game, Delaware outshot JMU 18-13, but JMU held the edge on draw controls, 7-6. Healy had 10 saves to record double-digit stops for the fifth time this season. Zaugra finished with four saves.

Next up for the Dukes in Towson, as the Tigers visit University Park for a 1 p.m. game on April 7. The game will be a rematch of the last two CAA title games. Towson won the 2012 CAA title, while JMU claimed the 2011 league championship.

Baseball

Old Dominion 7, JMU 4

HARRISONBURG -- Ben Verlander went 3-for-5 with a home run and Josiah Burney drove in three, including an important two-run shot in the eighth, as Old Dominion opened a Colonial Athletic Association baseball series with a 7-4 win over James Madison on Friday night at Eagle Field at Veterans Memorial Park.

ODU snapped a four-game losing streak to improve to 14-14 overall and 5-8 in the league. JMU lost its fifth in a row to drop to 14-14 overall and 6-6 in the CAA.

The Monarchs grabbed the early lead with a run in the first then continued to add runs in four additional innings, answering each attempt by the Dukes to cut into the deficit. ODU scored in efficient fashion, stranding just three runners on the bases, while JMU left 11 runners on base and was 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position.

Dean Ali earned the win to improve to 2-2 after limiting JMU to two runs on five hits in 6 1/3 innings with four strikeouts. Ryan Yarbrough retired four of five batters faced to pick up his first save of the season.

Sophomore Chris Huffman took the loss in his first start of the season and just the second of his collegiate career. The usual closer matched a JMU season high with nine strikeouts and allowed six runs, five earned, on eight hits in a career-high 7 2/3 innings.

Verlander doubled and connected on his CAA-leading ninth home run of the season while scoring three runs. He had three of ODU's nine hits. Burney's only hit was the two-run homer in the eighth while adding a sacrifice fly.

Senior center fielder Johnny Bladel extended his hitting streak to 16 games with a 1-for-3 night. He also walked and was hit by a pitch to reach base in three of five plate appearances, taking over the national lead in on-base percentage. His mark of .55147 moved just past Mike Papi of Virginia, which was idle Friday, at .55128.

Senior right fielder Cole McInturff was 2-for-5 with two runs scored. Senior second baseman Casey Goss had a hit and two RBIs. Sophomore left fielder Chad Carroll picked up his NCAA-leading seventh triple of the season, one shy of the school season record.

ODU grabbed an early lead in the game as left fielder Josh Eldridge, the second batter, hit a first-pitch single to center. Slaton followed with a first-pitch double to right center for a quick 1-0 advantage.

The Monarchs added an unearned run in the third. Verlander led off with an infield single to the left side and moved to second when Huffman's throw to first sailed high. A groundout pushed Verlander to third and he scored on a deep sacrifice fly to right center by Burney.

Verlander scored the third ODU run when he led off the fifth with his CAA-leading ninth home run over the high wall in right.

After JMU stranded the bases loaded in the fifth, the Dukes finally cashed in during the sixth. McInturff led off with a double to right. Carroll's sharp hit up the middle was stopped with a great defensive play by second baseman Brian Bashara, but it moved McInturff to third. Goss followed with a groundout to the left side to score McInturff to make it 3-1.

Senior catcher Bradley Shaban was hit by a pitch and Bladel singled to lead off the seventh for JMU. After junior third baseman Ty McFarland grounded out to advance both runners, junior designated hitter Conner Brown greeted new pitcher Brandon Smith with a sacrifice fly to left to pull the Dukes within a run at 3-2.

ODU responded in the eighth as Verlander led off with a double. He moved to third with one out. After a popup, Huffman had Burney at two strikes before the lefty barreled up on a two-run home run over the fence in right for a 5-2 lead for the visitors. Third baseman Jordan Negrini singled to chase Huffman. After the change, Negrini stole second and came around to score on a single through the left side by catcher Michael Perez for a 6-2 score.

In the bottom of the inning, McInturff led off with a single and scored on the seventh triple of the season by Carroll. Goss' RBI groundout made it 6-4. JMU kept up the pressure, loading the bases with three walks, which came on a total of 13 pitches. However, Brown hit into a fielder's choice grounder to strand the bases loaded for 11 left on base.

Shortstop Tyler Urps drew a leadoff walk in the ninth, advanced a pair of bases on wild pitches and scored on a sacrifice fly by Bashara as ODU added an insurance run without a hit.



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