Despite a relatively slow start, #5 Northwestern (12-4, 5-1 B1G) pulled away to defeat Ohio State (9-8, 1-5) 17-12 in Columbus on Thursday in their final game of the regular season.
At around the same time she was being drafted into the nascent WPLL with the fourth overall pick, Selena Lasota led the way with six goals.
After earning her sixth straight Big Ten freshman of the week award days earlier, Izzy Scane added four goals. Lindsey McKone tallied a hat trick plus an assist, and Megan Kinna contributed a goal, two assists, and five draw controls.
The struggling Buckeyes hung with Northwestern early. After an explosion of scoring to begin the game, the teams were tied at five midway through the first half. Then, the Wildcats began to pull away.
Northwestern led 9-6 at the half, and continued to press their advantage. A goal with 17:44 left from Baley Parrott brought the Buckeyes to within two, but that was as close as they would get. The Wildcats immediately embarked on a 7-1 run to take the score to 17-9 before allowing three completely meaningless goals to end the game.
Mallory Weisse continued an impressive run of play in net for the Wildcats by making ten saves. This week, Weisse, Lasota, and Scane became only the second Northwestern trio to ever receive all three Big Ten weekly awards (Offense, Defense, and Freshman) after leading the way to impressive wins over Michigan and Notre Dame. Meanwhile, Weisse and Lasota were named the National Offensive and Defensive Players of the Week respectively by Inside Lacrosse.
It was certainly a week full of honors for Lasota. She was named to the top 25 list for the Tewaraaton Award, given to the best player in the country, as well. But before the fifth year senior takes all of her accolades to Philadelphia and the Fire, the Wildcats have the postseason to worry about.
Northwestern will take on Michigan in a rematch during the Big Ten semifinals, which will take place next week at Johns Hopkins. Time and date are TBD. With a win, the Wildcats would likely lock up a top-six seed and home-field advantage in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. They would also advance to the Big Ten Final, likely to meet Maryland.