The Rutgers women’s lacrosse team won in thrilling fashion on Thursday night, coming from behind to defeat Michigan in overtime by the score of 9-8. Senior Paige Paratore produced the game winning goal with just ine second remaining on the shot clock, securing the first Big Ten victory of the season for the Scarlet Knights. Rutgers held a +13 shot advantage and +10 turnover margin in the game.
Rutgers held a 7-5 lead early in the second period, but Michigan rattled off three consecutive goals to take the lead with 12:48 remaining in the contest. Three minutes later in the action, Paratore tied things up with another goal. She had a huge game, finishing with a career high of four goals. In addition, Joanna Reilly scored two goals and had one assist, while Samantha Budd produced both a goal and assist on the night. Goalie Devon Kearns made 8 saves in the victory.
Here is Paratore’s winning goal in overtime, courtesy of the Big Ten Network, which aired the game live.
Here's the game winner, courtesy of Paige Paratore! pic.twitter.com/heorkPTtmx— Rutgers Women's Lax (@rulaxbrand) April 13, 2018
Here is what Paratore said after the game, via the Rutgers press release:
“I was really calling for the ball on that last play and I really wanted it,” said Paratore, who secured a career-high four goals in the win. “I wanted to help my team win, but it wasn’t just about me. It was a whole team effort. We just moved the ball well, went with the game plan and executed.”
Head coach Laura Brand-Sias, in her 16th season in charge, added:
“This win means a lot. It puts us in the running for the Big Ten Tournament, which is ultimately our goal. To gut out a gritty win like that is huge and will help us moving forward for sure.”
ICYMI - @rulaxbrand beat Michigan Thursday, 9-8: pic.twitter.com/wUqz9cMQyw— Rutgers On BTN (@RutgersOnBTN) April 13, 2018
It was a much needed win for the Scarlet Knights and are now 7-8 on the season, as well as 1-3 in Big Ten play. Rutgers has over a week until their next contest, a road game at #7 Northwestern (11-3; 3-0) on Saturday, April 21st. They’ll conclude the regular season at home on April 28th against Johns Hopkins (8-5; 1-3). If they can win one, they’ll hopefully qualify for the Big Ten Tournament in May.
What a gritty win for #RUWLAX tonight against Michigan.— Rutgers Women's Lax (@rulaxbrand) April 13, 2018
Hear from tonight's hero Paige Paratore and head coach Laura Brand Sias after our thriller in OT.#GoRU pic.twitter.com/JEAoSUmWBJ