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Northwestern fails to stop the bleeding against Florida

Superman had Kryptonite. Harry Potter had Voldemort's touch. And Kelly Amonte Hiller has the Florida Gators.

No. 4 Florida beat No. 5 Northwestern, 13-12, Saturday afternoon. The Gators have now bested the Wildcats five times during Amonte Hiller's tenure, the most of any team in the country.

The Cats nearly made a miraculous comeback, scoring three goals in the last five minutes to come within one goal. They missed tying the game by inches, as Kara Mupo's goal with 14 seconds left was disallowed because she stepped in the crease.

The Cats were playing without leading scorer Kaleigh Craig, who was injured in last week's loss to Johns Hopkins. Mupo picked up some of the slack, knocking in four goals. But the Gators were able to hold Kat DeRonda, who has been NU's leading scorer over the last four games with 13 goals, to only one goal.

After falling behind 5-1 to start, the Cats closed the gap to 5-4 with 7:51 left in the first half. But the Gators picked up another two goals before the break to head into halftime leading by three.

The teams traded goals for much of the second half until Florida began to pull away, opening the lead to 11-5 with with 17:25 left. That's when NU made its offensive push, eventually coming within one before Mupo's almost-game-tying goal.

Florida's leading scorer--and the nation's leading scorer iwith over four goals per game--freshman Shannon Gilroy was held to only two goals but fellow freshman Sammi Burgress stepped up with four goals.

The ALC Tournament starts May 1 in Evanston, and the Cats will most likely play Penn State in the first round. But first up, the Cats take on USC at Wrigley field next Saturday. The Trojans are playing only their second season as a varsity team and are coached by former NU All-American player and assistant coach, Lindsey Munday.