Cardinals outlast Royals 17-16 in conference opener
WASHINGTON – CUA won its Landmark Conference opener 17-16 over Scranton inside Cardinal Stadium on Thursday afternoon. The Royals pulled ahead 15-14 with 6:32 remaining, before the Cardinals scored three straight to open up a two-goal advantage. Scranton scored once more, but it wasn't enough as CUA held on for the win.
The game was tight throughout, with neither team able to open up a lead of more than three. Scranton scored the game's first goal 2:35 in when Emily Goss found the back of the net on a free position shot.
Lindsay Brophy answered for CUA a little over a minute later with the first of her seven goals.
After the Royals went in front 2-1, Nicole Laitner scored on a free position shot at the 23:10 mark to tie things up.
The Royals then scored three straight, capped by Deanna Giorno's goal with 17:20 on the first half clock, to give the visitors a 5-2 advantage.
CUA answered with back-to-back goals by Brophy and Katie Miller as the Cards pulled to within one with 10:32 to play before the half.
Scranton's Kerry Sullivan and CUA's Brophy then traded scores to make it a 6-5 affair with 7:04 on the clock, before Mary Clare Regan tied things at six with 6:23 remaining, with her free position goal.
Goss gave the lead back to the Royals with a goal at the 4:16 mark, but Laitner's free position goal 32 seconds later tied the score once again.
DiBartolomeo's goal with 1:34 left in the half put CUA on top 8-7, a lead the Cardinals took into halftime.
Scranton scored the first three goals of the 2nd half to go in front 10-8 with 24:03 left to play in the game, but Brophy netted two straight in a span of 22 seconds to tie things at 10.
The back-and-forth continued with the Royals scoring two straight to go back on top 12-10 with 16:51 on the clock, but goals by Brophy and DiBartolomeo tied the score at 12 with 15:06 to play.
With 12:56 remaining, Brophy fed Regan for a goal and a 13-12 CUA lead, but Goss answered soon after with a free position goal to tie things at 13.
Theresa Ciletti got into the act for CUA with a goal at the 10:48 mark to put the Cards in front, but Goss scored her fifth and final goal 28 seconds later to tie the score for the ninth time.
With 6:32 to play, Scranton retook the lead when Giorno scored to make it 15-14, but 24 seconds later Ciletti tied the score for the 10th and final time.
Brophy then put the Cardinals up by one with a free position goal, and Ciletti's score with 2:55 on the clock made it a two-goal spread.
Scranton refused to go away though, receiving a goal from Kaitlin Lazorko with one minute remaining to pull the visitors within one.
The Royals then won the ensuing draw control, but Yasmeen Ajdari made two huge saves in goal for the Cards, and CUA hung on for the win.
CUA finished with a 47-28 advantage in shots and a 35-24 lead in ground balls. Caroline Scalamandre and DiBartolomeo led the Cardinals with five draw controls, while Brophy scooped up a team-high six ground balls.
Ajdari earned the win in goal for CUA, stopping six shots in her 30 minutes of action, with starter Tricia Pehnke sending back three shots.
The Cardinals return to action on Tuesday, April 2 when they host St. Mary's. Start time is set for 6 p.m.