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Paletta ’18.5 records hat trick in three-goal loss to Cornell

Bears, 0-4 in Ivy League play, hope to surge for last spot in postseason conference tournament

With five games remaining, the women’s lacrosse team had failed to record an Ivy League win. They had a chance to do so Saturday against league-leading Cornell, a squad that has not lost since a one-goal defeat to Pennsylvania State University Feb. 25.

After an initial deficit and a hard-fought second half, the Bears (4-7, 0-4 Ivy) fell to Cornell (9-1, 4-0 Ivy) in an 11-8 bout.

“It was a great game,” said Carolyn Paletta ’18.5, whose sister plays for the Big Red but was injured for Saturday’s game. “We had a lot of momentum that we’d been lacking in the past couple of weeks. … Overall, just the enthusiasm and the intensity was really high. A lot of people didn’t expect us to win this game — and we didn’t — but … I don’t think (the score) reflects the way that we played.”

The Big Red came out fast and netted a goal just 1:03 into the game. Then, just 14 seconds later, Cornell found the back of the net again.

The opposition stretched the lead to 4-1 before Bruno brought the game to 5-3 at the half.

In its past two losses, Brown has fallen into early deficits. “It’s definitely a problem that we’ve had all season,” Paletta said. “I think we tend to just take a little time to get our heads in the game and get comfortable with our sticks and get comfortable with each other. … Especially offensively, adapting to the structure of the other team’s defense, I think it takes us a little while to figure them out.”

Hafsa Moinuddin ’19 finished an early second half goal to bring the game within one. But the next nine minutes saw Cornell score four unanswered goals to make the score 9-4.

Bruno outscored the Big Red 4-2 in the final 17:38, but the lead proved to be too much for the Bears. Two saves by Cornell’s Renee Poullott and a free position shot and goal by Catherine Ellis — her fourth of the game — iced the win for Cornell.

Paletta led the way for the Bears with three goals. The junior midfielder is on a hot streak as of late, scoring nine goals in the last three games and finding the back of the net in all but one game this year.

“I’ve been feeling pretty good. My stick work’s been good and I really think our offense is starting to figure each other out more,” she said.

Cornell picked up 21 ground balls to Brown’s 11, and Maggie Bigelow ’20 recorded nine saves in the loss.

Brown sits last in the Ivy League, but the Bears are remaining positive for the rest of the season.

“We’re really focused on belief,” Paletta said. “(It’s) our main mantra right now. We’re not officially out of the Ivy League Tournament, and we just need to play our absolute best in all of the next coming games and just believe that we are the stronger team, because we know that we have the potential and we know that we can beat these teams.”

The Bears will look to grab their first Ivy League win against Harvard (6-5, 3-1 Ivy) Saturday at Stevenson-Pincince Field.

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