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Courtesy: Columbia University Athletics/Mike McLaughlin

Lacrosse Hosts Iona & Travels To #8 Penn For Competitive Two Game Weekend

Courtesy: Columbia University Athletics
          Release: 03/29/2012
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NEW YORK, N.Y. - The Columbia women's lacrosse team looks to bounce back with a competitive weekend, facing two familiar opponents. On Friday, March 30 at 7 p.m., the Lions host Iona at Robert K. Kraft Field to cap the month. Columbia will kick off the month of April with a trip to Philadelphia, Pa. to face league leading No. 8 Penn on Sunday, April 1 at 1 p.m. Follow the games with live stats by clicking the link above.

INSIDE THE SERIES

Columbia and the Gaels of Iona first met in the 2011 season when the Lions traveled to New Rochelle, N.Y. Behind four goals and an assist for a game-high five points from Taylor Gattinella, Columbia powered to a 12-8 win to lead the all-time series 1-0

Penn owns the all-time series facing Columbia at 15-0, dating back to the Lions' inaugural season of 1997. In the teams' meeting last season, the Quakers took a 13-6 win as head coach Liz Kittleman faced her former team for the first time.

As an assistant coach at Penn from 2007-2010, Kittleman helped the Quakers to four consecutive Ivy League Women's Lacrosse Championships and an appearance at the NCAA Women's Lacrosse Championship game in 2008.

This also marks the second time assistant coach Courtney Lubbe will go against her alma mater. The former Penn attacker finished her career a perfect 28-0 in Ivy League contests, along with four conference titles, before graduating in 2010.

IVY LEAGUE & NATIONAL STATISTICS

Columbia ranks in the nation's top 40 in caused turnovers at #33. The team has caused 56 turnovers in seven contests posting a game average of 8.00.  Senior Amanda Goodhart, who ranks eighth in the nation, leads the Lions and stands atop the Ivy League averaging 2.14 caused turnovers per game with a total of 15. Junior Kacie Johnson has improved her defense this season causing 12 turnovers placing her at #22 in the country.

The Lions stand atop the Ivy League in groundballs, fielding 120 for a game average of 17.14. Sophomore Paige Cuscovitch paces the team with 20 total groundballs on the year. Her average of 2.86 per game ranks her at #23 nationally and third in the Ivy League.

First-year goalkeeper Skylar Dabbar continues to battle defensively ranking at #42 in the country in saves per game. She has tallied a total of 51 saves in seven games to average seven saves per game.

Johnson continues to lead the offensive charge for the Lions standing second in the league with 32 total points in seven games. She ranks 13th nationally with an average 4.57 per game and ranks at #26 in assists per game at 1.86, with a total of 13 on the season.

LAST TIME OUT

The Lions fell to 10th-ranked Dartmouth on Saturday, March 24 in the team's latest outing. First-year Katie Angulo and Johnson both scored a pair of goals to led the Lions, but the Big Green's quick hitting offense handed Columbia a 15-4 loss. Columbia currenty stands at 1-6, 0-4 in the Ivy League heading into this weekend's matchups.

CLIMBING THE CHARTS

Johnson's offensive production continues to make a presence in the Columbia record books. At 140 career points she currently stands fourth all-time. Her six-point performance against Vermont moved her past Adie Moll's ('04CC) career total of 127 points. The junior ranks seventh all-time in goals scored with 86, surpassing Katie Warner's ('07CC) mark of 84 set in 2007.  With 53 career assists Johnson stands second all-time moving past Columbia standout Holly Glynn's ('09CC) mark of 52.

Goodhart is a staple on the defensive end for the Lions, causing a career total of 63 turnovers. She currently places third all-time, surpassing the 59 caused turnovers by Whitney Crisman '02CC and Kristin Connors '03CC.

On Saturday, February 25, Gattinella became Columbia's all-time leader in draw controls breaking the mark of 112 set by Carrie Anderer in 2006. She continues to add to her total this season tallying 124 career draw controls through four games. Gattinella ranks fourth all-time in career groundballs along with Marisa Marcellino '08CC with a current total of 108.

SCOUTING THE GAELS

Iona is 5-4 this season, and will enter the game on Friday, following a 15-8 loss to Stony Brook. Two players have over 20 points so far this season - Casey Scully has scored 17 goals and 21 points, while Kyllie Gregory leads the team with 26 goals and eight assists for 34 points.

SCOUTING THE QUAKERS

No. 8 Penn currently stand atop the Ivy League at 5-2, 3-0 this season. The team's most recent win came at 18th-ranked Cornell, 11-10. The Quakers have five players with over 10 goals this season. Courtney Tomchick has scored 13 goals, Maddi Polawski has a team-high 15 goals, while Caroline Bunting, Meredith Cain, and Erin Brennan each have 14 goals. Brennan leads the team with 29 points including a team-high 15 assists.

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