WOMEN'S LACROSSE | Princeton Rivalry Renewed
Published: Friday, March 1, 2013
Updated: Friday, March 1, 2013 01:03
For the second straight week, the No. 10 Georgetown women’s lacrosse team (2-0, 0-0 Big East) is set to do battle against a team tigers.
The Hoyas, fresh off a 13-10 win over the No. 17 Towson Tigers Saturday, will host Princeton at MultiSport Facility on Friday at 4 p.m., in what will be the latest installment in a series of ultra-competitive games dating back to 1997.
The Tigers are coming off a 10-5 win over Villanova in which their defense impressively managed to hold Villanova’s leading scorer goalless on the game. Georgetown will put Princeton’s strong defense to the test, however, with a potent and balanced attack that has averaged 14.5 goals per game this season.
“Offensively, we are playing really well together,” Head Coach Ricky Fried said. “We’re distributing and dispersing the scoring, so a number of people are producing for us right now. It will be hard for [Princeton] to focus on one or two players.”
While he is pleased with the way his offense is moving, though, Fried believes the team could be stronger on the opposite end of the field.
“The big emphasis for us overall is while we’re playing well on the offensive end, we need to shore up our defense a little bit more,” he said. “We showed some improvement from the Delaware game to the Towson game and look forward to continue to improve in that area.”
Fried’s predecessor, Kim Simons, who coached the Georgetown women’s lacrosse team in the late ‘90s, attended Princeton and was the catalyst in bringing the two teams together to compete 16 years ago.
Since then, the Tigers have taken an 11-6 lead in the series and have come out on top the last three times the teams have met, including in a tight 12-11 victory over the Blue and Gray in 2011 and a four-overtime win in 2010.
And according to Fried, the competition and history between the two programs has inspired a bit of a rivalry between the two.
“We cross recruit a lot because people that are interested in playing at a high level and going to an excellent academic institution tend to look at these two schools,” Fried said. “I think that because most of the games are one- to three-goal games either way, it’s competitive, and there are some bragging rights that go along with it.”
Still, despite the lengthy history between these two programs, the Hoyas are going to approach this game just like any other.
“I think this is a big possession game, and so first and foremost, we need to concentrate on winning the draws to gain possession,” Fried said.
A win on Friday would mark Georgetown’s best start to a season since 2009, when it won its first three games and made it to the NCAA tournament only to lose in the first round to none other than Princeton.
A 3-0 start to the season would give the Hoyas some momentum, but it certainly would not give them a chance to relax; Georgetown faces lacrosse powerhouses Johns Hopkins and North Carolina in mid-March before starting its Big East campaign.
“At this point, since we have two wins under our belt, its really about maintaining momentum and continuing to build that momentum because there’s no real break in our schedule,” Fried said. ”I know its cliche, but we do have to focus on one game at a time because if we get ahead of ourselves, it becomes a big distraction.”