Women's Lacrosse Open 2016 Season with Split

Feb 20, 2016

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - The University of Dubuque women's lacrosse team fell to Augsburg, 12-11, in a nailbiter and defeated Northwestern (Minn.), 21-8, to open their 2016 season on Saturday night.

Junior Robyn Wittkopf got off to a hot start with eight combined goals as the Spartans (1-1) split their opening matches inside the Augsburg dome in Minneapolis, Minn. UD's all-time leading goal scorer, senior Bridget Schirmers, added a hat trick in both matches as UD couldn't overcome a one-goal deficit in the final four minutes against Augsburg and outshot Northwestern, 32-17, in season's first win. The Spartans wrapped up victory number one at nearly midnight after starting doubleheader at 7 p.m.

Fall to Augsburg, 11-12
UD vs. Augsburg 2.20.16 WLAX

Junior Robyn Wittkopf added her third goal of the night with 3:59 remaining to pull the Spartans (0-1) within one goal of Augsburg, 12-11. Neither team was able to get off a shot in the waning minutes as the Spartans narrowly lost the shot count, 25-22, in defeat.

The Spartans surrendered an early 5-3 lead, but stayed within three goals of the Auggies until Breann Tjaarda's free position goal with 5:29 left pulled UD to within 11-10. Augsburg countered 21 seconds later to provide their final tally.

Senior Bridget Schirmers also added three goals on three shots while sophomore Breann Tjaarda tallied three ground balls, eight draw controls, and three caused turnovers, all team-highs, to go along with her pair of goals.

Freshmen goalkeeper Kaley Weir started her first career game and registered nine saves while playing the entirety of the game.

UD kept it close in the shot count, but Augsburg (1-0) held the upper hand in ground balls, 27-13, and turnovers, 32-43. 

Defeat Northwestern (Minn.), 21-8
UD vs. Northwestern (Minn.) 2.20.16 WLAX
The Spartans (1-1) led by the narrow margin of 3-2 ten minutes into the game, but notched six unanswered goals, two each by Breann Tjaarda and Robyn Wittkopf, to go up, 9-2, and put the game out of reach.

Wittkopf, a junior, led the team with five goals while Tjaarda, Schirmers, Kelly Wetherald, and Alora Esparza added three apiece. Overall, eight Spartans scored on the night.

UD won the shot count, 32-17, and forced 34 turnovers by the Eagles, who were playing their first women's lacrosse game in school history.

The Spartans held Northwestern to just two goals in the second half, and scored the first four goals in the second period to extend their halftime advantage into a 16-6 score with 17 minutes to go.

Both freshmen goalkeepers saw playing time as Kaley Weir started and registered all three UD saves in 18 minutes and was relieved by Ambryn Dittmer in the final 42 minutes.

Coach Loggins and the Spartans have some time off before hosting their home season opener against Hamline University (Minn.) on Friday, March 11 at Oyen Field at 7:00 p.m.