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Panthers fall in opener

HOBOKEN, N.J. - Sophomore attack Valerie Barnhart (Gilbertsville, Pa.) scored seven goals and added an assist to lead Stevens Institute of Technology to a 13-11 win over Plymouth State College on Saturday in a women's lacrosse game at DeBaun Field.

Stevens (3-0) earned its third straight win. The game was the season opener for Plymouth State (0-1).

Plymouth State held the lead for much of the first half. Sophomore attack Annmarie Guglielmo (Gansevoort, N.Y.) scored just 1:56 into the game and junior midfielder Katie Sheridan (West Sayville, N.Y.) followed with a goal at 4:21 to give the Panthers an early two-goal lead.

Plymouth State held a 6-5 lead at the 20:28 mark following a goal by senior midfielder Julie Shields (Whitby, Ontario). But Stevens scored the final three goals of the first half to take the lead. Senior midfielder Jess Soltysik (Pennsauken, N.J.) scored consecutive goals at 21:03 and 23:26 to put the Ducks in front. She then assisted on a goal by sophomore Kim Mirra (Aston, Pa.) at the 28:50 mark to give Stevens an 8-6 lead at halftime.

Plymouth State pulled to within 8-7 early in the second half on a free-position goal by freshman attack Lilly Silva (Lowell, Mass.) at 32:20. But Soltysik and Barnhart answered with goals over the next three minutes to push the lead back up to three. The teams traded goals the rest of the way as the Panthers never got closer than two goals.

Sheridan led the Panthers with two goals and three assists, while Silva finished with three goals. Freshman Bethany Brown (Norwich, Conn.) scored twice for PSC, while Guglielmo, Shields, junior Michelle Norton (Sandwich, Mass.) and freshman Caitlyn Irving (Avon, Conn.) scored once each.

Stevens held a slim 30-28 edge in shots. Plymouth State junior goalkeeper Carmen Villanueva (East Schodack, N.Y.) stopped 13 shots. Senior Kristine Conley (Ossining, N.Y.) made five saves for Stevens.

PSC makes its next appearance during the spring trip to California. The Panthers will play at Whittier College on Monday, Mar. 17, and will face Colorado College on Thursday, Mar. 20, at Redlands, Cal.