Women's lacrosse championship: Maryland beats Boston College behind Steele's six goals
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Sophomore attacker Caroline Steele scored six goals as the top-seeded Maryland lacrosse beat Boston College 16-13 Sunday to win the program's 14th national championship and finish the season undefeated.
"I'd like to start off and say congratulations to Boston College. They were a tough team today, and a tough opponent," Maryland head coach Cathy Reese said. "To kind of cap it off, I was really proud of our team. Proud of our girls' effort. We struggled shooting in the first half, but we came out in the second half on fire. Give these guys all the credit. They played hard. They played their hearts out. To have the season that they had this year going undefeated was something that's really special. So huge congratulations to all of my players."
In front of an NCAA-record 11,668 fans, Steele tied the championship game record for goals.
Junior attacker Taylor Hensh finished with a hat trick while sophomore midfielder Jen Giles, junior attacker Megan Whittle and freshman attacker Kali Hartshorn each scored twice.
Maryland played in its fifth straight final and won its third title in four years. The Terps scored just 10 seconds into the game and racked up five goals in the first 4:29 of the second half, but Boston College kept it from becoming a runaway.
The Terps completed an undefeated season for the fifth time in program history and the first time since 2001. Maryland has won three NCAA championships in the last four years.
Although Maryland never trailed, the Terps were pushed by Eagles, who battled back from an early 5-2 deficit to tie it at 5-all at halftime.
After being shut out for the last 16:11 of the first half, the Terps stormed out of halftime with five goals in the first 4:29 of the second half to regain command.
Caroline Wannen scored for Maryland with 12:04 left to start the Terps on another scoring surge. Hensh put Maryland up 13-10, then, after Kent's fifth goal of the game, the Terps picked up three more unanswered goals by Kali Hartshorn, Steele and Hensh with 4:07 left to all but seal another title for Maryland.
Hartshorn put Maryland up 1-0 on a goal just 10 seconds into the game. Hensh made it 2-0 1:42 later when she plucked her own rebound out of the air and swept it in behind BC goalie Zoe Ochoa.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.