- The Washington Times - Saturday, May 18, 2002

BALTIMORE The karma wasn't good for Georgetown's women's lacrosse team in the NCAA tournament semifinals last night. The Hoyas had turned the ball over late and watched Cornell's Sara Fischer send the game to overtime on a goal through traffic with 17 seconds left. Hoyas top scorer Erin Elbe didn't have a point.

But the top-seeded Hoyas didn't buckle in the extra session. Elbe won the opening draw and scored her 57th goal of the year 12 seconds later to put Georgetown back in front. Teammate Gloria Lozano won the remaining three draws and Tracy Weickel fed Elizabeth Ryan for the clinching goal with 1:30 left as the Hoyas won 12-10 to advance to the championship game back at Loyola College's Curley Field at 1 p.m. tomorrow against the winner of last night's Princeton-North Carolina game, which did not end in time for this edition.

"The first thing I said [to her teammates when the game went into overtime] was, 'we didn't lose,' said Georgetown co-captain Kristin Raneri. "People were bowing their heads, but we had already won once in overtime this year [15-13 over then No. 2 Princeton]. And anybody who was on this field last year and lost in overtime wasn't going to let that happen again."

As Georgetown coach Kim Simons said, the draws are critical in the six-minute overtime. The Hoyas' 4-0 domination in overtime upped their advantage on the game to 17-8. Georgetown also won the battle of ground balls, 33-27. And as happened in the 11-4 quarterfinal victory against Duke when seven Hoyas scored in the first half alone, seven of Elbe's teammates picked up the slack with a goal or two last night.

"We have preached a team effort all year long, in particular on the offense, because we know teams are really keying on Erin," said Simons, a Princeton graduate. "Every time she touches the ball, two or three people are looking to move to her. We had a little bit of a difficult time getting into a rhythm because of the aggressive defense that Cornell played. [But] the Duke game gives you a lot of confidence in the other players. And people don't appreciate how much Erin does for us besides score."

Elbe, one of five finalists for the Tewaarton Trophy that goes to the nation's top player, admitted to being frustrated by the Big Red, especially early in the game.

"I just had to step back and realize that I had 10 other players on the field who could score," Elbe said. "Anyone who underestimates any of our attackers is stupid. Everybody had my back and I had everyone else's today."

Said Cornell coach Jenny Graap, "We showed a lot of courage and guts to tie it up and send it into overtime. Georgetown is very talented and they had the experience of being in the Final Four. We did an awesome job on Elbe, but Georgetown had enough other people stepping up and scoring goals. That's what it came down to."

The Hoyas did almost as good a job of controlling the Big Red's Jaimee Reynolds, the Ivy League Player of the Year. Reynolds, who came in with 55 goals including seven in the quarterfinals against the seven-time defending champion Terps, had just two last night.

Some of the credit goes to the Hoyas defenders, but goalie Chandler Vicchio also came up big, making 10 saves, including two on Erica Holveck in overtime.

"Chandler's a stud," Simons said. "There were a couple of points in the second half where Cornell could have gone ahead, but she had a couple of huge one-on-none saves."

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