For 90 seconds, it looked like Princeton’s women’s lacrosse team might repeat its Mother’s Day magic.
In 2006, the Tigers upset second-seeded Virginia 8–7 on Mother’s Day in the first round of the NCAA tournament. On May 13, facing the Cavaliers again in the tournament’s opening round, Princeton scored two goals in the first minute and a half. But this year’s third-seeded Cavaliers recovered from the early blows and went on to win 19–10.
Senior Alex Gangler ’07 scored 1:03 into the game, and Katie Lewis-Lamonica ’08 — Princeton’s leading scorer in the regular season — added another goal 27 seconds later. The Tigers’ offense stalled after Lewis-Lamonica’s next goal, and Virginia began to roll, building an 8–3 halftime lead.
With Princeton trailing 11–4 in the second half, head coach Chris Sailer called her final timeout, and her team responded after the break with goals from Kathleen Miller ’08 and Lewis-Lamonica, who would finish with five on the day.
Virginia answered with two goals of its own before Ashley Amo ’08 scored to pull the Tigers within six. However, Virginia’s speed and intricate passing overwhelmed Princeton’s defense, and the Tigers would get no closer the rest of the way.
Sailer credited her seniors for leading Princeton late in the season and helping the Tigers earn an at-large bid to the postseason. “I’m really proud of them for getting to the NCAA tournament — there was a time when we weren’t sure we were going to make that,” said Sailer, who was coaching Princeton in the NCAA tournament for the 16th time. “[The seniors] had a great career at Princeton. They’ve been responsible for a lot of wins.”