PHILADELPHIA - The No. 16 Penn women's lacrosse team held off a furious second-half comeback by Cornell, winning 14-9 at Franklin Field on Saturday.
Freshman Ali DeLuca continued her stellar season with four goals, including what would stand up as the game-winner in the second half. Melissa Lehman and Rachel Manson each added three goals and an assist.
The Quakers (6-1, 2-0 Ivy) beat Cornell (2-5, 1-1 Ivy) for the first time since March 27, 2004, and for the first time at home since 1996. Penn is off to its best start since 1980, when it went 6-1-1 to start the season en route tothe program's firstIvy League title.
DeLuca scored twice in the first 3:15 to put her team up 2-0 before Cornell equalized on goals from Courtney Farrell and Lindsey Moore.
The Quakers answered with a 6-0 run, started by Chrissy Muller’s tally midway through the half and followed with goals by Lehman, Becca Edwards, DeLuca, Manson, and Emma Spiro’s first career score.
Cornell, however, killed off some of that momentum at the end of the half as Farrell sprinted the length of the field to notch a last-second goal as time expired.
Moore added another at the start of the second half to make it an 8-4 game before Manson and DeLuca added two more. Spiro nearly added her second but was denied by the post off a free-position shot.
The tide then turned for the Big Red as they scored four unanswered to cut the Quakers’ lead to 10-8 with 17 minutes to play. Penn, however, came out of a timeout determined to slow the pace, and methodically rebuilt its lead with a 4-1 run to end the game, including two goals from Lehman.
Sarah Waxman picked up the win, making four saves. Mary Montague and Renee Hughes split time for Cornell, with Montague taking the loss. Penn peppered the two with 27 shots; the Big Red took 17.
Penn dominated draw controls 16-8, and led 8-2 in the first half.
The Quakers will now hit the road for four games in a row starting with Johns Hopkins Wednesday at 7 p.m.