By Joe Pantorno, Sports Editor
There are promising signs from the Hofstra women's lacrosse team. After a deceiving loss to no. 3 Maryland and a tough defeat hosting Rutgers, the Pride was at it again, giving another ranked opponent, this time no. 11 Penn State, a run for its money.
"Our offense sets up every person on this team," said head coach Abby Morgan. "There's opportuities for everyone. When you have possession of the ball, you have more opportunities."
The Nittany Lions' experience and skill brought them an 11-9 victory though on Wednesday afternoon at Shuart Stadium.
Hofstra (2-5) was given its biggest contribution from freshman attack Brittain Altomare, who scored three goals, two of them coming in the game's first six minutes. Altomare's early goals kept the Pride on place with Penn State (6-2), who scored five goals in the game's first seven minutes, three of them coming from Tatum Coffey.
"Some of the younger kids have been really stepping up for us," said Morgan. "They're doing some big things."
Coffey recorded her hat trick in a span of 34 seconds.
The Pride battled back with goals from junior midfielders Casey Kellogg and Jill Maier. It was Maier's first goal in three games, her tenth of the year, a tally that was needed for Hofstra's leading scorer.
"We were able to get the offense going," said Morgan. "But it wasn't enough."
With 14 seconds left in the first half and with Hofstra trailing 6-5, senior midfielder Maryann Miller tied the game with her ninth goal of the season going into halftime.
"We came out hustling," said Miller. "We had highs, we had lows, but we needed a total 60 minutes today."
Penn State answered to begin the second half with three straight goals to take a 9-6 lead.
Hofstra cut the lead to two goals on three separate occasions, but could not draw closer as Coffey scored two more goals in the second half for a grand total of five on the day.
"She was tough to deal with," said Morgan. "She was fed the ball and made things happen."
The Pride however had some problems with turnovers, giving the ball away 18 times on the day.
""When you turn it over so much, we didn't have the ball enough to get opportunities for all of our players," said Morgan. "And I don't things are doing anything too special about it."
Hofstra is next in action on Wednesday as it travels to Denver.