by Andrew Goodwin, Sports Information Assistant
SPOKANE, Wash. - Johnson & Wales (Denver) scored six straight goals in a run that spanned the first and second halves to take a commanding lead and then held on to defeat the Whitworth Pirates 12-5 Thursday afternoon in Whitworth's inaugural lacrosse game.
Ashley Guerrero scored half of the Wildcats' (1-2) 12 goals and assisted on 2 others. Delynnia Woitt scored twice for the Bucs (0-1), including the first goal in Pirate history.
Woitt's historic goal came after Guerrero opened the scoring with a free position goal for the Wildcats. Liah Gingerich grabbed the ensuing draw and raced down the field before passing to Woitt, who fired in Whitworth's first goal.
Woitt scored again on a free position shot with 19:07 remaining in the half to knot the game at two. Gingerich followed with a free position goal of her own to give the Bucs a 3-2 lead.
JWU responded to the deficit by netting six consecutive goals during the final minutes of the first half and first few of the second. Guerrero scored three goals during the run and Katie Smith tossed in another two. Jordan Cain halted the run by firing in a goal from a near-impossible angle, but the Wildcats responded with three more to take an insurmountable lead.
Trinity Frank scored Whitworth's final goal of the day, sneaking into the scoring area and beating JWU goalkeeper Brigid McCollam for the Pirates' fifth goal.
McCollam was excellent for the Wildcats, halting 17 of Whitworth's 22 shots on goal. She also held the Bucs to just a 2-8 day on free position attempts while the Wildcats went 4-9.
The Pirates finished with 29 total shots, outpacing JWU by 4, and cleared 17 times in 21 attempts. The Wildcats held advantages in groundballs (26-22), turnovers (26-30), and draw controls (11-8).
Whitworth returns to action on March 15 when the Bucs host Pacific (Ore.) in their first Northwest Conference contest.