CHATHAM, NJ - The Chatham girls lacrosse team picked up its intensity and played its best in the second half of its Cougar Spring Weekend game against Glen Ridge on Saturday.
But that couldn't make up for a slow start that allowed Glen Ridge to hold on for an 11-7 win over Chatham at Cougar Field.
Glen Ridge (2-0) moved to a 3-0 lead just 3:01 into the action, which put the Lady Cougars (1-1) into a hole it couldn't climb out of.
"We were a little shell-shocked at the beginning," Chatham coach Hilary Renna said. "Glen Ridge came out with a lot of fire and intensity and we came out a little flat. I think it wasn't really until the last 10 minutes of the game that they thought, 'we really need to do something.' The intensity picked up at the end."
It wasn't until there was 8:14 left in the game that Chatham scored a goal that was assisted by a pass. Schuyler Bixby was credited with the lone assist of the game for setting up Abby Morgan's goal, cutting the Lady Cougars' deficit to 9-7.
"In the first game, most of our goals (15-5 win over West Morris) were assisted and this game it was hard for us to adjust," Morgan said. "They stayed really tight on the cutters, which made it hard on us. I think we came into the game a little nervous. I made a lot of mistakes in this game."
Gretchen Gilmore scored to give Glen Ridge a 7-3 lead early in the second half before Chatham picked up its game. Emilie de Keyzer came from behind the net to connect with a high shot and Zoe Kraus netted her second goal a couple minutes later for Chatham.
Glen Ridge built its lead back up to 9-5 before Morgan scored two straight goals - the first on a cut across the middle that she finished with a high shot. Morgan then converted Bixby's pass to make it 9-7.
"Our defense played really well, especially Michelle Connolly," Morgan said. "We were kind of off today. In the first half we weren't composed or playing smart. In the second half we had more intensity. Kat (Friday, 9 saves) made some big saves for us to keep us in it."
Bixby, Kraus and freshman Lizzie O'Neill each scored an unassisted goal in the first half for Chatham.
Schuyler Bixby scores the first goal of the game for Chatham
Chatham plays host to Oak Knoll on Monday at Haas Field.