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Michigan women at WCLA Tournament

BC Club, Georgia, Pitt Club and Michigan Club Reach WCLA Division I Semifinals

May 10, 2023
Paul Ohanian
Mike Caudill

VIRGINIA BEACH — The top four seeds in the USA Lacrosse WCLA Division I Championship Tournament all secured spots into Thursday’s national semifinals, although the familiar tournament refrain of “survive and advance” was applicable for at least three of the winners.

Led by three goals from freshman Kayleigh Page and 10 saves by All-America goalie Delaney Ott, No. 2 seed Georgia had a dominating performance in its 13-4 win over No. 7 San Diego State. But things were a bit tighter for No. 1 Boston College Club, No. 3 Pittsburgh Club, and No. 4 Michigan Club, who were all in survivor mode for their quarterfinal victories on Wednesday.

Defending champion Boston College Club, the nation’s only remaining undefeated team at 16-0, found itself in a battle for the second straight day. After playing close into the fourth quarter on Tuesday to defeat No. 16 seed Florida State, the Eagles had to work into overtime on Wednesday to slip past No. 9 seed UCLA, 10-9. 

Senior Julia Szynal proved to be the hero for BC, scoring the overtime winner 40 seconds into the second three-minute OT period, her fourth goal of the day.

“I was just trying to stay patient with the ball, and then when I got a chance, I shot high because their goalie had been stopping my low shots,” Szynal said. “Their goalie played great.”

Sophomore Kate Ruiz registered 11 saves for the Bruins, including an earlier save in the closing seconds of regulation against Szynal.

Boston College advances to play No. 4 Michigan in Thursday’s first semifinal after the Wolverines slipped past No. 12 seed Virginia Club, 12-11. The Wolverines led 12-9 with five minutes remaining, but things got interesting again when Virginia closed to within one on Maddie Brooks’ fourth goal of the game with 1:30 left. Michigan withstood a final rush by the Cavaliers to secure their berth into the semifinals.

“That was our best team win of the season, with offense and defense playing well together,” said senior Miranda Jacobson, who tallied a season-high five goals. “I think we were all very locked in. This is my last run at a championship, so it felt great to be able to help my team stay alive.”

Pitt also stayed alive with its 9-8 win over sixth-seeded BYU but needed Olivia Pickens’ insurance goal with 58 seconds left before it could feel comfortable. Despite an unusual journey though the 2023 season as an independent team for the first time, the Panthers find themselves still alive for a championship. Both previous Pitt titles, in 2014 and 2019, were won in Virginia Beach.

“We know some of the history that our team has had here, and we love it here,” said Pitt junior Margaret Stephan, who tallied a game-high six goals. “Being an independent team this year was a different experience, and our schedule didn’t include nearly the same number of games (nine) that we usually play, so this is great. With no regionals this year, we felt like we were at a disadvantage, but we’re still here.”

All of Thursday’s Division I and II semifinal games will be available via free video streaming. Links to the streams can be accessed on USA Lacrosse’s YouTube channel.

DJO and Gatorade serve as official event sponsors for the 2023 USA Lacrosse WCLA Championships.


10 a.m. — Boston College Club (16-0) vs. Michigan Club (13-6)
1 p.m. — Georgia (19-2) vs. Pittsburgh Club (9-2)