The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Vanderbilt Lacrosse bounces back from loss, survives a fourth quarter surge from Kennesaw to win 16-15

The Commodores improved their overall record against Kennesaw State to 10-0 all-time.
The+Commodores+celebrate+a+goal%2C+as+photographed+on+Feb.+17%2C+2024.+%28Hustler+Multimedia%2FAnseley+Philippe%29
Anseley Philippe
The Commodores celebrate a goal, as photographed on Feb. 17, 2024. (Hustler Multimedia/Anseley Philippe)

The Vanderbilt Commodores (3-1) continued their strong start to the season on Saturday when they beat the Kennesaw State Owls (4-3), 16-14.

The Commodores opened the game by hitting the ground running. After winning the opening face off, they charged down the field where leading Brooke Baker snuck a shot through the legs of Kennesaw goalie Julia Weiss. Baker’s opening goal was her 12th of the season. The Commodores continued the strong start with a nice cut down the middle from Freshman Anna Taraboletti, who scored unassisted. Kennesaw responded with two goals, one scored and one assisted by shifty Junior Hannah Davis. 

Vanderbilt surged back ahead, taking a 4-2 lead at the four minute mark thanks to back-to-back goals from Junior Molly Finlay. After a quick goal from Kennesaw, Finlay continued her tear by threading the needle to hit Kate Bradley on a smooth cut and subsequent strike in the upper right side of the goal with 30 seconds remaining in the period to put Vanderbilt up 5-3.

Finlay ended the game with five goals and three assists, recording more points (8) in this game than she had in all the prior games this season combined (7). The three assists also brought her season total from one to four.

“I’m glad we pulled out the win,” Finlay said.

After a stagnant first half of the second period, Finlay was back to strike first on a free possession attempt to make it a first half hat trick and extend Vanderbilt’s lead to three goals. As Vanderbilt seemed to be pulling away, Kennesaw completely shifted the momentum of the game with three unanswered goals in two minutes to even the score. 

Vanderbilt Junior Kemper Robinson then put an end to Kennesaw’s run when she  evaded three defenders to put Vanderbilt ahead 7-6 at halftime.

Despite the mere one point lead, Vanderbilt was in clear control of possession in the first half. The Commodores’ 22 shots doubled Kennesaw’s 11, but the Owls’ accuracy allowed them to capitalize on their opportunities.

The third period very much tilted in favor of the Commodores. After trading goals to start the period, the Commofores put in three straight to go up four. With nine shots on goal to Kennesaw’s four, the Black and Goal continued to dominate possession. Vanderbilt’s Brooke Baker and Kennesaw’s Shannon Harrington both scored, which put the game at 12-8 going into the final quarter.

Despite being outscored 7-4 in the fourth quarter, the Commodores held on to secure the win. A late surge of three Kennesaw goals in the final two minutes brought the game to the last possession but Vanderbilt managed to hang on as the clock ran out. 

“I was proud of the girls for figuring out a way to come up with what we needed at the end,” Hewitt said.

Vanderbilt will look to ride the momentum from today’s win into a huge challenge on the road against No. 15 Johns Hopkins this Wednesday, March 6.

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About the Contributors
Ty Levine
Ty Levine, Staff Writer
Ty Levine (‘27) is from Westport, Conn., and studies economics, Spanish and film. A writer for the sports section, Ty spends his free time playing pickup basketball and watching "Survivor" and "Curb Your Enthusiasm." You can reach him at [email protected].
Anseley Philippe
Anseley Philippe, Staff Writer and Photographer
Anseley Philippe ('25) is a potential biomedical engineering and Spanish double-major who aspires to be an immunologist. Outside of The Hustler, he can be found queuing up at 2301, wandering around campus during his evening promenades or trying to keep up with his Spanish. He can be reached at [email protected].
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