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 outmatched by No. 11 Florida, loses 20-5

After a strong first-quarter performance, the Commodores could not keep up with the Gators.
Alex Brodeur
Kemper Robinson of the Commodores during the game, as photographed on March 30, 2023. (Hustler Multimedia/Alex Brodeur)

Coming off a dominant 19-6 win over Xavier, the Vanderbilt Commodores (6-4, 0-2) failed to keep their momentum going against No. 11 Florida (11-2, 2-0). Kemper Robinson and Cate Bradley led Vanderbilt with two goals apiece, but Florida’s Danielle Pavinelli led all scorers with five goals. The Commodores were plagued by offensive struggles and were not able to contain a red-hot Gators team.

After winning the opening draw, the Gators moved into its offense with blistering speed, getting their first shot off within seconds just for it to be stuffed at the goal by Lexie De Roziere. Florida maintained control of the ball and got off three more shots, but none came close to scoring as the Commodores shut them down for a full 90-second possession. On the first Commodore possession of the game, Vanderbilt opened up an alley for Robinson, who blasted through the defense and put in her 20th goal of the season.

However, the Gators began to show why they are one of the best teams in the nation. In two possessions, Florida won the draw, rushed at the Commodores’ defense, and earned itself two goals in response to Vanderbilt’s first. Yet, Vanderbilt remained calm, playing methodically and moving the ball around. That was until Ella Smith launched a dime in front of the crease to Bradley, who tucked the ball right behind the Florida goalie for a score.
On the ensuing possession, the Commodores sprang to life again, this time having Molly Krestinski brush past her defender and send a blistering shot past the poles and into the net. The Gators again, though, leaned on their high-flying offense, tying the game at three halfway through the first quarter. 

The first quarter would continue its shootout nature, the Commodores and Gators trading explosive shot attempts. The Gators were applying pressure to Vanderbilt, attempting to overwhelm De Roziere by putting her constantly under target. In the four minutes Vanderbilt spent on defense, De Roziere made two saves but also gave up two goals. Robinson would then earn another goal for Vanderbilt as she juked and blew by another Gator defender, but Florida would stifle the Commodores’ momentum with another goal, finishing the period ahead 6-4. 

What once was a competitive game began to turn into a landslide, as the second quarter consisted of a full-throttle offensive showing from Florida. Vanderbilt was playing on its back heels, with the Gators suffocating the Commodores’ defense with an endless barrage of goals. Vanderbilt was unable to garner any quality possessions and quickly fell behind its opponent who was firing on all cylinders. By halftime, Vanderbilt trailed 14-4 and was outshot 28-7. 

At halftime, De Roziere was pulled from goal, Coach Hewitt opting to put Paige Gunning in between the poles. The Commodores kicked off the third quarter with some life, winning the initial draw and finding Bradley for a quick goal. Still, improved defensive play was not enough to slow down the Gators, who put in four goals during the third period and continued to control the tempo.

With such a sizeable lead, Florida was able to cruise to victory, repelling any of Vanderbilt’s efforts to crawl back into the game. The Commodores earned three free-position attempts in the fourth quarter but failed to convert on each one, a hallmark of the struggles the team had offensively. The loss marked Vanderbilt’s second defeat at the hands of a ranked opponent, as it lost to No. 15 John Hopkins earlier in the year and have now fallen to 0-2 in the AAC.

Up next, Vanderbilt will hit the road to take on Penn State in University Park, Pa. on Wednesday, Apr. 3 at 12 p.m. CDT.

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About the Contributors
David Hernandez
David Hernandez, Lead Sports Analyst
David Hernandez (‘26) is a student in the College of Arts and Sciences double majoring in political science and law, history and society with a minor in communication studies. Outside of writing for The Hustler, you can find him playing basketball, catching up on his favorite shows and mourning the tragedy that is New York sports. He can be reached 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].
Alex Brodeur
Alex Brodeur, Staff Photographer
Alex Brodeur (‘27) is majoring in communication studies in the College of Arts and Science. When not taking photos for The Hustler, you can find him listening to music, traveling or visiting museums. He can be reached at [email protected].
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