Maddie McDaniel (copy)

Junior attacker Maddie McDaniel recorded one of the two hat tricks the Dukes had in the game.

No. 7 JMU lacrosse traveled to Happy Valley and earned a 11-9 victory over No. 19 Penn State for its fifth-straight win. The Dukes had two players with hat tricks in Wednesday’s game — juniors midfielder Halle Duenkel and attacker Maddie McDaniel.

It was a 6-6 match at halftime, but the Dukes went on to score the first five goals of the second half to spread the margin to 11-6. However, the Nittany Lions fought back and scored three goals to get it within two. In the end, they couldn’t pull it out in front of the home crowd.

While JMU walked away with the win, the Nittany Lions held the edge in multiple statistical categories. Penn State had more shots (37) with 28 on goal compared to the Dukes’ 30 shots and 18 on goal. The No. 19 team in the country also had eight more ground balls than the Dukes. JMU also struggled holding onto the ball, turning it over 20 times compared to 16 by Penn State.

However, the stat that earned the victory for the defending national champions was 19 saves by redshirt sophomore goalie Molly Dougherty. The Dukes ended up needing nearly every save she made to pull out the two-goal win.

JMU, now 5-1 on the season, will return to Sentara Park on Sunday. The Dukes play Rutgers with first draw at noon.

Contact the sports desk at breezesports@gmail.com. For more lacrosse coverage, follow the sports desk on Twitter @TheBreezeSports.