The Rutgers women’s lacrosse team is set to face Lehigh in its third matchup between the programs tomorrow. The No. 14 Scarlet Knights (3-0, 0-0) lost their previous two matchups against the Mountain Hawks (0-1, 0-0) in 2015 and 2016.
With its 3-0 record to start the season, Rutgers has moved up three ranks in all major polls. The program jumped into the top 15 in the country after being previously ranked as No. 17.
The Knights spoiled Georgetown’s home-opener last game in a 17-16 comeback victory. The Hoyas (1-1, 0-0) opened the game strong, leading by 5 at the end of the first quarter. In the second quarter, Rutgers lowered its lead down to 4 goals as five different Knights scored to end the half.
Graduate student attacker Stephanie Kelly led the team in points and assists to aid in the victory. After last week's games, the Big Ten named Kelly Co-Offensive Player of the Week. The Saint Joseph's transfer received the first Big Ten accolade of her career.
“She has such a great IQ and understanding of the game,” said head coach Melissa Lehman about Kelly. “She has great vision and timing and is looking (out) for her teammates.”
Rutgers went on to close the lead to 14-12 to enter the final quarter and go on a 5-2 scoring run to secure its third consecutive win.
Lehigh lost its last game against Saint Joseph’s 13-11. The Mountain Hawks led by 4 goals into the fourth but conceded their lead in the final 15 minutes. Hayley Hunt had a strong game with 13 saves. In its last matchup in 2016, Lehigh defeated the Knights by 4 goals.
“It’s a new year. We have new faces on our team. It’s about us. Every day and every competition is about what we are bringing,” Lehman said.
Lehman opened her 2020 debut season with a 4-0 record and hopes to do the same tomorrow.
Rutgers hosts the Mountain Hawks tomorrow at 1 p.m. with the match being streamed on Big Ten Network+. Live stats will be provided on ScarletKnights.com at the start of the game.
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