Jankowski scoring over the keeper

JMU redshirt sophomore attacker Olivia Mattis shoots over Ohio State senior goalkeeper Claire Morris in the Dukes' win over the Buckeyes, 16-7, on March 4. Mattis came in off the bench Wednesday against No. 12 U.Va. and scored a goal to tie it at 7-7 before the Dukes pulled ahead to defeat the Cavaliers, 10-8, for their ninth straight win. 

No. 5 JMU lacrosse defeated No. 12 U.Va. 10-8 on Wednesday, extending its record to 9-1. 

“I mean, we knew it was gonna be a dogfight with them, they're a great team,” redshirt senior goalkeeper Kat Buchanan, who notched a career-high 12 saves, said. “It took us some time to get going. But I think we took care of business and offense they really did it when they needed to.”

Both teams thrived on defense throughout the first quarter, allowing minimal room for shots. The only goal of the quarter was scored by JMU’s redshirt junior midfielder Taylor Marchetti, netting her seventh of the season. Each team won one draw control and committed three turnovers. 

The Cavaliers then scored three goals in a six-minute span throughout the second quarter to jump to a 3-1 lead, holding the Dukes to two shots on goal.

“We had a lot of sparks coming off the bench and stepping up for the team,” JMU head coach Shelley Klaes said. One of those sparks was sophomore midfielder Savannah Derey, who scored her seventh goal of the season with 2:29 remaining in the second and earned her first career hat trick. At halftime, the Dukes trailed 3-2.

“Before every game I’m like … I'm gonna run super hard and I'm gonna do my best whether that's scoring or whether that's assisting,” Derey said. 

Although the Dukes tied the game at four with redshirt junior attacker Isabella Peterson scoring her 40th goal of the season, JMU never regained the lead in the quarter. Redshirt senior defender Mairead Durkin was handed two yellow cards leading to a red in the third quarter, which ejected JMU’s preseason All-American from the game. 

The Dukes led the third quarter in draw controls 4-3, while the Cavaliers led in shots on target 7-5 and ground balls 3-2. U.Va. let 6-5 at the end of the third.

Buchanan saved five shots in the final frame to break her previous career-high in single-game saves she set March 1 versus Maryland (10). 

The bench also proved itself in the fourth quarter, when redshirt sophomore attacker Olivia Mattis came on to replace a hurt redshirt midfielder Lizzy Fox and scored a free-position shot, tying the game 7-7.

Along with Buchanan’s help, the Dukes remained even with U.Va. and took their first lead since the second quarter after redshirt sophomore midfielder Maggie Clark scored her sixth goal of the season running the edge of the box and striking the top right of the net. The Dukes then led 8-7 with 4:33 remaining.

After facing a short flurry of shots from U.Va., Derey secured her hat trick making the game 10-8 with 1:59 remaining. The Cavaliers were awarded a free-position shot with 0.7 left but was stopped by Buchanan. The Dukes now stand 18-35-1 all time vs. U.Va. The Dukes scored eight goals in the second half compared to two in the first.

“We weren't tight,” Klaes said. “It was all coming through in our shot selection and, you know, just lack of movement, overthinking, and so we just said just play the game. Don't think so much.”.

Each team finished the game with a 100% clear rate, while JMU led on shots 21-20 and draw controls 15-7. Redshirt senior Rachel Matey earned a season-high eight draw controls. 

“I just feel like that's a game of lacrosse, you know, like a run can be you score three goals and then all of a sudden the next team scores three goals,” senior attacker Tai Jankowski said. “It was just really hard the whole game, you know, but we never gave up and we really trusted each other. We had each other's backs...”

The Dukes play AAC foe Temple next, on March 25 at noon in Philadelphia in their second conference matchup of the season. U.Va. plays Notre Dame next the same day.

Contact Zach Mendenhall at mendenzl@dukes.jmu.edu. For more lacrosse coverage, follow the sports desk on Twitter @TheBreezeSports.