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Lacrosse: Northwestern offense overwhelms Rutgers in conference opener

Selena Lasota tied a career-high with nine goals as NU exploded for a season-high 23 scores.

Northwestern Athletics

Northwestern opened up Big Ten play on Thursday night in Piscataway defeating the Rutgers Scarlet Knights 23-13. The Wildcats (5-3, 1-0) entered the contest ranked seventh in the nation despite recent losses to No. 1 Boston College and No. 3 North Carolina. Northwestern’s explosive offense proved too much for the Scarlet Knights (4-5, 0-1), as Selena Lasota tied her career-high with nine goals and freshman Izzy Scane added six more.

Scane got the Wildcats going with two goals in less than four minutes. She finished the hat trick in just over seven minutes. Lasota accumulated two goals in a largely quiet first half, including a score with five seconds left in the period to give NU a seven-goal advantage at the half.

The senior added seven more scores in the second half. Lasota’s fifth goal, a brilliant behind-the-back score as she ran across the face of goal, showcased why she is a Tewaaraton Award hopeful.

(Video courtesy of Big Ten Network)

The game was filled with yellow cards and penalties by both sides. Entering the contest, Northwestern was fifth in the country and led the Big Ten in yellow cards and the Scarlet Knights also had a remarkably high number of yellow cards. This contest fully lived up to its expectation in that manner with a combined 13 yellow cards given.

Ally Palermo and Lauren Gilbert’s yellow cards in very quick succession gave the Scarlet Knights almost two minute with a two player advantage. While these yellow cards and overall issues with discipline did not change the result of this game, this could determine a game result.

Lasota’s seventh goal was reminiscent of Lionel Messi’s famous goal against Athletic Bilbao. The Canadian worked her way through what seemed like the entire Scarlet Knight defense before scoring.

The Wildcats visit Marquette on March 23 before they enter a difficult stretch of their schedule, taking on No. 19 Penn State, No. 6 Penn, and No. 10 Johns Hopkins.