MARS HILL, N.C. - The Mars Hill women's lacrosse team dropped their first South Atlantic Conference game in program history, 23-11, to Wingate at the Ammons Family Athletic Center on Saturday afternoon.
The Lions (2-4, 0-1 SAC) trailed early, down 4-0 in the opening 5:35 of the game with Wingate (2-7, 1-0 SAC) goals from Nina Cifolilli, Emily Ketron, Morgan Akers and Kendall Wells. Mars Hill cut into the lead with goals from Kiersten Foust and Olivia Hokanson, scored 1:08 apart, but Wingate struck back with five straight. Wells notched her 30th goal of the season at 9:31 of the first half. Akers, Casey Roux and two goals from Ellie Gottschalk gave Wingate the 9-2 edge with 11:33 left in the half.
Hokanson scored her second goal of the game to stop the streak and was a catalyst for the Lions, taking four of the next five goals. Trailing 10-6 with 5:21 left in the half, Wells pushed the Wingate lead to 11-6 on her hat-trick goal. Hokanson answered for her hat-trick to pull within four, but two goals from the Bulldogs in the final 2:08 found the Lions trailing 13-7 entering halftime.
Wingate would go on to outscore the Lions 10-4 in second half. Mars Hill opened the half scoring three of the first five goals, two from the stick of Molly Tobias. With 18:00 remaining in the game, the Bulldogs reeled off seven straight goals and eight of the last nine scored in the game to extend their lead to double-digits. Akers scored three goals in the streak. Wells added two tallies.
Joanna King (1g, 6a) led all players with seven points. Akers (6g) and Wells (5g) led all players in goal scoring. Hokanson paced the Lions offense with four goal. Foust (3g) and Tobias (1g, 2a) each had three points.
Arion Pierre made three saves to pick up the win. Alexandria Holleran made six saves in the losing effort.
Mars Hill returns to action on Wednesday, March 21 versus Lincoln Memorial. The home contest is set to begin at 5 p.m.