JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville University's women's lacrosse team defeated Coastal Carolina, 11-10, Sunday afternoon at D.B. Milne Field to crown its fourth ASUN Conference Tournament title and earn the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
The Dolphins trailed by three at the break, before storming back with three unanswered goals to start the latter half.
"I told them to keep chipping away. 'You're always 0-0. You just have to keep focused on doing your job well and executing.' We had a really good defensive game to hold them at the end, and our attack took much better shots in the second half," said head coach Mindy McCord.
The Chanticleers took an early lead with a pair of free position goals, but saw their advantage cut in half just under the 20-minute mark with a Danielle Della Rocca score. Erica Beal guided the Dolphins to their first goal after causing a CCU turnover.
Ashtyn Hiron evened the score less than two minutes later (17:43) and rattled in another shot just before the half, as Jacksonville entered the locker room down, 6-3.
Trailing the only conference opponent that has defeated them in the regular season in five years (the Chants posted a 12-8 victory over JU a few weeks ago), the Dolphins' coaching staff asked their team one question.
"We asked them, 'what's next?' We needed to stay focused on what was next and not what happened.
"'Keep doing your job well and support your teammates on the field.'"
Coastal Carolina broke the 6-6 stalemate at 19:30, but the programs found themselves in another less than 30 seconds later with Jaime Chapman tacking in another goal from Della Rocca.
There was one final tie, 9-9, with 12:32 remaining, before Julmice gave the Dolphins' their first lead of the day.
The advantage stuck through the final horns, despite several Chant advances.
In the closing minutes, CCU went 0-for-3 on free-position attempts -- one was saved by Dolphin goalie Sydney Matthews – and a turnover with 30 seconds remaining on its final effort sealed the game.
Hiron finished the evening with a hat trick, while Rachel Aus, Della Rocca and Julmice each scored two.
Wilcox was the named the tournament's most valuable player, and was joined by Emily Barton, Beal, Della Rocca and Chapman on the all-tournament team.
The Dolphins will find out their postseason destination Sunday night at 9 p.m. Click here to view the NCAA Selection Show.