The Syracuse women's lacrosse team advanced to the NCAA Division I tournament final four with a 13-9 win over visiting Florida on Saturday.
The fourth-seeded Orange (18-3) will make its second straight appearance, and its fourth since 2008, in the national semifinals, facing unbeaten and top-seeded Maryland on Friday at 5 p.m. or 7:30p.m. at Villanova.
The Orange extended its winning streak to 13 games. The Gators end the year with an 18-3 record.
"We knew it was going to be a tough game against a very good Florida team," said Syracuse coach Gary Gait. "They got the better of us earlier this year in Miami. We looked at this game as an opportunity to demonstrate how much we've grown and how far we've come."
Freshman Kayla Treanor led Syracuse with four points, three in the second half as she helped the Orange pull away. Alyssa Murray had two goals and an assist, while Katie Webster, Kailah Kempney and Devon Collins had two goals each.
Kitty Cullen (McDonogh) and Shannon Gilroy led Florida with three points (two goals and an assist) each.
Treanor keyed Syracuse's decisive 7-2 second-half scoring run that gave the Orange control. The teams were tied, 4-4, at intermission before Treanor gave Syracuse the lead for good with an unassisted goal 53 seconds into the second half. She recorded a second unassisted goal at the 26:51 mark, but Nora Barry found the back of the net for the Gators to cut the lead to one.
Webster continued Syracuse's offensive outburst with a free-position goal, and Collins scored on an assist from Treanor. After a goal by Cullen, Becca Block, Murray and Collins all scored to give Syracuse its largest lead of the game at 11-6 with 9:08 to play.
The Gators netted three of the game's next four goals, but Kempney halted Florida's comeback effort with an unassisted goal at the 1:26 mark to put the game out of reach.
Both teams held leads in the first half, but neither could pull away.
The Orange jumped to an early advantage before Florida posted three unanswered tallies to take its only lead of the game.
North Carolina 13, Virginia 9: The third-seeded host Tar Heels (16-3) scored three times in the opening minute and downed the Cavaliers (11-10) in an NCAA Division I quarterfinal.
North Carolina advances to the final four for the fourth time in five seasons.
Carolina jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first 31/2 minutes, led 10-2 at halftime and won despite five consecutive Virginia goals in the final 16 minutes of the game.
North Carolina was led by Abby Friend with five goals and an assist. Kara Cannizzaro added three goals and two assists and Brittney Coppa (North Carroll) had two goals and an assist. Freshman Aly Messinger set a season high with three assists, Morgan Rubin (Bryn Mawr) scored a goal and Sam McGee (Bryn Mawr) had an assist.
Kelly Boyd (St. Paul's) had a hat trick, and Liza Blue (Garrison Forest) and Courtney Swan each scored twice for Virginia.
Northwestern 15, Penn State 7: Northwestern will go to the NCAA final four for the ninth straight year after a stunning first half led to a rout of Penn State on Saturday in Evanston, Ill.
The No. 2 Wildcats (19-2) will meet No. 3 North Carolina (16-3) on Friday night in Villanova, Pa. The Tar Heels beat Northwestern, 11-8, at Chapel Hill in the third game of the season.
Northwestern, which has won two straight NCAA championships and seven of the past eight, beat Penn State for the 17th straight time by overwhelming the No. 7 Nittany Lions (14-7) in every phase in the opening half, which the Wildcats ended with a 13-3 lead. They extended the lead to 15-3 before Penn State trimmed the final margin against the Northwestern reserves.
By dominating the faceoff circle, causing turnovers and possessing the ball 85 percent of the time in the first 30 minutes, they held a Penn State team averaging 28 shots per game to just four going into intermission.
Alyssa Leonard, a draw-control specialist, needed just the first 29 minutes to net a single-game career-high four goals. Erin Fitzgerald, the team's top scorer this season, added three.
Only two weeks ago, Penn State had taken Northwestern to overtime before losing in the American Lacrosse Conference semifinals. But this game was more like the regular-season meeting, which the Wildcats won 11-3.
The Wildcats brought the "mercy rule" into play before halftime, getting the 10-goal lead that results in a running clock.
Nine Northwestern players scored on a wide variety of plays – including three after brilliant passes, three by turning the net against hopelessly overmatched defenders and five on free-position foul shots.
Long Island University Post 7, Adelphi 6: Jackie Sileo broke the fourth and final tie by scoring the game-winner with six seconds left to lift the host Pioneers (19-0) over the Panthers (18-3) in an NCAA Division II semifinal at Stevenson.
Limestone 11, Rollins 10, 2OT: The Saints (20-1) had two goals in the final two minutes of regulation to force overtime and Jessie Aguglia netted the game-winner, an empty netter, with 1:13 left in the second overtime to win at Stevenson.
Chelsea Treat was shoved into the crease by the Rollins goalie, who got carded, setting up the game-winner.
The Saints face defending national champion LIU Post today at 3 p.m.
Mercyhurst 18, Limestone 17, OT: Deven Alves scored the game-winner with 2:56 left in overtime as the host Lakers (18-0) outlasted the Saints (16-2) in an NCAA Division II semifinal.
Mercyhurst scored twice in the final 58 seconds of regulation to force overtime. The Lakers advance to the title game to face Le Moyne next Sunday at 1 p.m. in Philadelphia.
Le Moyne 16, Adelphi 13: Andrew Chadderdon and Kevin Kelly each scored five goals to lead the third-seeded Dolphins (17-2) past the host Panthers (14-3) in an NCAA Division II semifinal.
Le Moyne led 7-6 at halftime.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun