BYU women’s lacrosse defeated Utah State 16-6 in their first home game as an official BYU extramural sport.
“We had this extra energy because this is the first,” said BYU head coach Nikki Dabrowski. “And firsts are always so exciting.”
A large crowd gathered to support the women’s team on Saturday. Fans lined the walls of the indoor practice field to cheer on friends and family members. Whitney Sieverts, who led the Cougars tonight with 4 goals, said the fans made a big difference in their play.
“We’ve never had a crowd like this because we have never had a home field before,” Sieverts said. “The fans definitely brought a new element to the game it was really fun to be here and play.”
The Cougars shut out the Aggies in the first half outscoring them 8-0. Sophomore Rachel Gilmore scored twice in the first half abd five other contributed goals.
“We played a great game and it really came together tonight,” Gilmore said. “We could hear people cheering for us and that really helped.”
The second half was much more balanced as the Aggies answered back with 6 goals. Both teams continued to apply pressure and exchanged goals throughout the half. However, the Cougars maintained their lead to finish the game 16-6.
“We focused on settling on offense and taking time to put the ball in motion instead of rushing towards the goal,” Sieverts said. “Defensively we applied more pressure on ball and transitioned from the midfield well. Everything came together.”
Coach Dabrowski said that she was nervous for this game, but knew that the team was prepared well. Since becoming official, the team now has access to BYU facilities such as the Indoor Practice Fields. Dabrowski said this has enabled the Cougars to better prepare for the season.
“We used to practice at Seven Peaks Arena,” Dabrowski said. “And we were never really prepared for the season since we could only practice a few times a week when the weather was bad. Now that we’re here we can focus every day.”
The Cougars only have four home games this season. Dabrowski said that they’re still a growing team and this will change in a few years.
“Since this is our first year, it’s still an issue getting teams to come out and play us,” Dabrowski said. “We’ve never hosted before. But it’s a good year to get our feet wet and see how it works. It’s the perfect start for the next season.”
The Cougars will travel next week to play in Santa Barbara and then Colorado the next week. Their next home game will be March 5 against University of Utah.