COLUMBUS Ohio - Nine Buckeyes scored, including four with six or more points, as the Ohio State women's lacrosse team defeated Canisius by a resounding 23-7 clip Monday afternoon at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. With the win Ohio State improves its record to 3-3 on the season, while Canisius falls to 1-3.
"I thought our team played with an incredible team effort," Alexis Venechanos, first-year Ohio State head coach said. "We knew Canisius played Stanford tight and I thought the possession was crucial at the start of the game and we were able to put away some opportunities that we didn't have early on Saturday. I was really proud of the way we handled that and how we played together."
Alayna Markwordt led all scorers with seven points off six goals and an assist, while Brittney Zerhusen (5g, 1a), Gabby Capuzzi (5g, 1a) and Jayme Beard (2g, 4a) all finished the day with six points. The 23-goal output is one off the record (24 vs. Denver, 1999) and the most scored by a Buckeye team since the 2000 season when Ohio State also put up 23 vs. Regis. In addition, nine of the Buckeyes' 17 non-free position goals came off assists, a fact not lost on the coaching staff.
"It was good to have a lot of assisted goals today," Venechanos said. "In practice yesterday, we worked on bringing up the ball up the field and we I thought we looked a lot sharper [than on Saturday]. That gave our attack the opportunity to put some goals away."
Ohio State opened scoring just 20 seconds into game at 29:40 when Beard earned her first of four assists by finding Capuzzi in front of goal. The Buckeyes went on to score 10 unanswered goals in the first 12 minutes of action, setting the running clock in motion.
Markwordt, a junior attacker from Woodbine, Md., accounted for three of the first 10 goals of the game, scoring them all within a six-minute span. Canisius put itself on the board for the first time at 16:03 with free-position goal by Carly Quinn and added to it just over 30 seconds later, setting in motion a 4-2 Buckeye run to close out the half and send the teams into the break with a 14-4 margin.
Coming out of the intermission, Zerhusen was on fire, scoring three goals in a row before giving way back to Markwordt who added a pair back-to-back to stretch the lead to 19-4 with 18:04 to play. Beard then punctuated the run to give Ohio State six unanswered over the first 15 minutes of the second period.
"We came out fired up today," Capuzzi said of the scoring barrage after the game. "This was a statement game for us and I thought we really played well together and took advantage of our opportunities."
The Griffs would strike with three of the next four goals from Kate Gosson, Maria Kotas and Megan Oosting, closing the score to 21-7 before the Buckeyes added a final two goals in the closing 2:12 of action.
Ohio State led the stat race with a 47-14 advantage in shots, 20-12 in groundballs and a commanding 24-7 margin in draw controls. Annie Carruthers, the preseason ALC goalie of the Year, made three saves in win before handing over the game to sophomore stopper Megan Fiorito who tallied two in the final 14 minutes of action.
The Scarlet and Gray return to action Thursday, March 10 in South Bend, Ind., against the Big East's Notre Dame at 4 p.m. The Fighting Irish are 2-2 on the year with wins at California and at Duquesne and losses at Stanford and vs. Northwestern.
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