ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. - The second-seeded Meredith College lacrosse team upset the top-seeded Piedmont Lions in Saturday's finals to capture the 2014 USA South Women's Lacrosse Championship title. Tournament Most Valuable Player Katie Burnet will lead her team in the first round of the NCAA Division III tournament set for early May.
Today's fearce battle on the field began with the opening draw in favor of Piedmont. A quick turnover caused by Burnet sent the ball headed in the other direction.
Meredith missed its first shot at the net and recovered the ball on the play. But a turnover gave the Lions their first of four attempts before Avenging Angel Lottie Meadows found the net to put Meredith on the scoreboard first at 22:45.
Cahner Manns recovered the next draw control for PC, and the Lions made quick work at the net to tie the game.
Piedmont's head coach gathered her team for a timeout, and the Lions responded scoring the next three goals to tie the match with 13 minutes remaining in the period.
The Avenging Angels stepped out of a pair of free position opportunities before Meadows and Burnet combined for a score in a man-down situation to edge Meredith back in front.
The celebration was shortlived as Piedmont's Maggie McDaniel netted an unassisted goal with the Angels still in the penalty box. Manns added a second goal a minute later to give Piedmont their first lead of the match with 9:17 left in the half.
The teams exchanged goals during the 5:25 leaving PC with a one point lead.
The Lions amped up the offensive pressure and added two more goals to enjoy a brief three-point lead with 35 ticks left in the half.
But Victoria Doyle stepped to the eight meter line on a free position attempt and landed a winner to pull the momentum back in favor of the Angels as the clock wound down for the intermission.
Meredith contained the energy during the break and scored three goals during the first five minutes of the second stanza to regain a 10-9 lead.
The battle continued as the Lions netted two more for a one-point advantage at 18:04.
Piedmont made two attempts at the net during the next series, and Meredith keeper Anna Adcock picked up one of six saves to give control back to the Avenging Angels.
The patient Meredith offense set Burnet up to cut through the middle, and a foul on the play sent her to the eight-meter line for her second goal to even the score at 11s.
The Avenging Angels scored twice more to take a two-point lead before another penalty left Meredith vulnerable to an eager Lions offense.
Piedmont capitalized on the advantage and added a second goal to tie the score at 13 with just 25 seconds remaining in regulation.
Meredith controlled the final draw of the period but let the clock wind down to force the overtime extension.
Heading into the first of two three minute overtime periods, the Avenging Angels took control of the opening draw. But a quick turnover put the ball back in the hands of the Lions.
PC scored first on a free position attempt with Meredith in the penalty box.
Doyle captured the first draw of the second overtime segment, and Burnet found Doyle during the offensive set for a goal to tie the game at 14.
Jennifer Halvorson collected the next draw and Head Meredith Coach Lauren Scott called a timeout to set the plan for the final 2:11 of play.
Piedmont's USA South Rookie of the Year was whistled for a penalty, and Meredith's Danielle Lee scored what would turn out to be the game winner with just 19 seconds left on the clock.
Piedmont continued to battle, and McDaniel fought hard to gain control of the final draw. She hustled down field in time to give Alexis Narducci the ball, who found the net with seven seconds remaining in the game. In the routine check required of every scorer, Narducci's stick was ruled illegal and the goal disallowed.
Burnet led all with a game-high seven points on three goals and four assists. Winters led Meredith with four goals, adding nine groundballs, and Doyle tallied an impressive 11 groundballs with a trio of netters and five draw controls in the win.
McDaniel matched Winters' total with four goals, and Manns led all with seven draw controls, adding four points.
Adcock notched six saves in her seventh win on the season, and Carly Haraka recorded eight stops in the loss.
Mckynsey Douglas, Piedmont
Kirstin Norris, Greensboro
Raven Winters, Meredith
Katie Burnet, Meredith (MVP)
Victoria Doyle, Meredith
Danielle Lee, Meredith
Maggie McDaniel, Piedmont
Megan McDowell, Piedmont
Carly Haraka, Piedmont