In a game No. 15 Northwestern women's lacrosse needed to have to boost its NCAA Tournament chances, the third-seeded 'Cats (9-8, 3-2 B1G) knocked off the sixth-seeded Michigan Wolverines (6-12, 0-5 B1G) at Lanny and Sharon Martin Stadium for second time this season, a 20-5 in the first round of the B1G Tournament.
The contest was never really close after Michigan scored ten minutes in to cut NU's lead to 2-1, as the Wildcats reeled off six straight goals over the next seven minutes to take a commanding 8-1 lead that they would not relinquish. Northwestern closed the half on a 5-2 extended run, and led 13-3 at the half.
The second half played out just like the first, as NU responding to a quick Wolverines goal with a 7-0 run to put the game officially out of reach. Most of these goals were scored by NU's bench, who spent the majority of the second half running out the clock on a dominant victory.
As it does in many women's lacrosse games, NU's dominance on draw controls (11-6 in the first half, and 17-9 overall) was a large part of why this game was so one-sided. Per usual, Shelby Fredericks was best on the field in that category, registering eight. Selena Lasota and Kaleigh Craig led the way with three goals, followed by Christina Esposito, who finished with two. The 20-goal output was NU's fourth of season and second against Michigan, who the 'Cats defeated in Evanston 20-4 on April 7.
With the win on Thursday, the 'Cats move on to the conference semifinals tomorrow against Penn State, again on their home field. The game is scheduled to start at 8 p.m. at Lanny and Sharon Martin Stadium.