San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

SDSU women’s lacrosse splits two games over the weekend

The Aztecs lost their home opener to Ohio State 10-4 on Friday but bounced back two days later against the University of Cal Berkeley in a nail-biting 11-9 victory
SDSU Athletics
Senior attacker Deanna Balsama carrying the ball up field against Ohio State on Feb. 17

The Aztec women’s lacrosse team (1-3) went 1-1 over the weekend with a 10-4 loss to the Ohio State Buckeyes (3-1) on Friday and an 11-9 win against the Cal Berkeley Golden Bears (1-3, 0-1 Pac-12) on Sunday.


SDSU versus Ohio State on Feb. 17


The Aztecs were looking to capture their first win of the season against a very competitive 2-0 Ohio State Buckeyes team.

In the end, San Diego State lost 10-4 and needed to wait two more days to get that win. OSU’s offensive dominance in the second half and ability to disrupt SDSU’s goal-scoring opportunities with forced turnovers was too much for them.

Senior attacker Deanna Balsama got the scoring started by weaving her way through the OSU defense to bury her sixth goal of the season. 

The Aztecs played great defense in the first period, forcing Ohio State to two 90-second shot clock violations and only allowed one goal.

Graduate midfielder Jamie Level put the Buckeyes on top with a goal to start the second period. A little over 6:30 later, senior attacker Nicole Ferrara shot her 11th goal of the season past senior goalkeeper Sam Horan to give OSU a 3-1 lead.

At the 3:23 mark of the second period, Balsama’s second goal kept SDSU within striking distance and cut the Buckeyes’ lead to one.

The Buckeyes led 3-2 at the half with both defenses playing stellar. Horan made 12 saves and junior goalkeeper Regan Alexander only had to make six saves on eight shots on goal.

Senior attacker Caitlin Jones secured her first goal of the season at the 11:14 mark of the third period, with senior attacker Sydney Wolfington assisting the Carlsbad Native, who put the ball past Alexander to tie the game at three.

The tie was short-lived, as Buckeye senior midfielder Caly O’Brien netted a goal to regain the lead, then Ohio State scored six consecutive goals to increase the lead to 10-3 by the 4:18 mark of the fourth period.

Junior attacker Sara Toner put in the last goal for the Scarlet and Black but it was a little too late, as Ohio State went on to win 10-4.

“I thought we were competitive and were battling until we sort of lost control a little bit,” head coach Kylee White said postgame. “It’s a Big Ten opponent, they are gritty. I was really happy with some of the steps we moved forward from the weekend.”

Both teams caused nine turnovers each, but it was the ground ball pick up that favored Ohio State and was key to the win. The Buckeyes had seven more ground balls than the Aztecs (25-18).

Although the Aztec offense was unable to get more than four goals past Alexander, who finished with 11 saves, defensively, Horan had a pretty good night and made 17 saves on 27 shots on goal. 


SDSU versus University of Cal Berkeley on Feb. 19


Last year’s game against University of California Berkeley was one of the two Aztecs’ Pac-12 opponent wins and their first victory of the 2022 season. The result of that game was 15-6 for SDSU behind a five-goal performance from Balsama.

Even though the Scarlet and Black were able to defeat the Golden Bears last season, it is a new year with a new coaching staff.

“They’re a relentless opponent that is physical,” White said about Cal Berkeley after their 10-4 loss to OSU. “They have a new coach this year, I think there is always excitement around a new coach.”

White said Cal Berkeley has returned some of their top point getters and she expected a lot of one versus one drives. 

The game came down to the wire and the Aztecs came out on top 11-9 to secure their 10th victory against Cal Berkeley.

The Scarlet and Black got off to a hot start with consistent draw controls that led to four-straight goals. Two goals by Balsama and one each by junior attacker Brook Waddell and Jones. Wolfington and Waddell combined for three assists during that time.

After a Golden Bear goalie change, Cal Berkeley started to win draw controls and junior attacker Caroline Roxas and senior midfielder Maya Lawliss both scored to cut the Aztecs’ lead to two by the end of the first period.

Lawliss scored again to start the second period then Jones’ free position goal halted the Golden Bears’ momentum.

After that, sophomore midfielder Emma Betts and senior midfielder Cailin Young increased the lead to five with their goals, assisted by Waddell and Wolfington.

Before the end of the first half, senior midfielder Amanda Morse struck a shot past Horan for the Golden Bears to make it 7-4 Aztecs.

Ground ball pick up was a huge factor to ball security. SDSU had five more ground balls than Golden Bears in the first half.

After Jones’ third goal of the game got the scoring started in the third period, senior attacker Quinnlyn Mason scored twice for Cal Berkeley to cut the lead to two.

With Cal Berkeley nipping at the heels of the Aztecs, Balsama got them off their backs at the 6:38 mark of the third period. After the Golden Bears failed to execute on the offensive end, the Scarlet and Black took the ball in transition and the Sea Isle City native was the last one to get the ball and she buried it past Souliotis to make it 9-6.

Almost four minutes later, with the shot clock winding down, Balsama went one-on-one with a defender and won the battle by putting her fourth goal of the game in the back of the net to increase the lead to four.

At the 4:07 mark of the fourth period and the Aztecs leading by two after two Golden Bear goals, redshirt-freshman midfielder Kate Christos fouled sophomore midfielder Kennedy Mason, setting up a free position attempt to hopefully make it a one goal game. K. Mason was ready, the whistle blew, she fired on net and was stopped by Horan. The crowd roared in excitement.

About three minutes later, on the Aztecs’ offensive possession, Wolfington gave her team some breathing room with an underhand goal through the legs of Souliotis to make it 11-8.

Morse cut the lead to two with a little over a minute to go, but the Aztec defense stood their ground and secured their eighth-straight win against the Golden Bears for their first victory of the season.

“It feels good to have a win under our belt,” Balsama said postgame. “I feel like it is just going to give us more confidence moving forward in the season.”

Balsama finished with a team-leading four goals, eight shots on goal and two caused turnovers. 

The Aztecs finished with five assists, four from Wolfington and one from Waddell. Balsama said new teammate Wolfington is gelling really well with the team four games into the season.

“It’s nice having another feeder come in,” Balsama said postgame. “They’re always looking to feed, which is nice and I think she fits perfectly with our offense.”

Souliotis finished with 13 saves on 20 shots on goal (the Aztecs had a total of 24 and Drullinger allowed four goals), while Horan made 10 saves on 19 shots on goal.

“I think it was an important win for us, not just to get the monkey off our back but also to win in a way where we had to fight till the end,” White said postgame. “It was not like a breeze through, we earned that win.”

The next team to face the Aztecs is the No. 20 University of Southern California Trojans (1-1), who SDSU is 1-11 overall against and 0-5 at home, at the Aztec Lacrosse Field on Friday, Feb. 24.

About the Contributor
Adam Correa
Adam Correa, Senior Staff Writer
Adam is a senior at San Diego State University studying journalism and media studies. This is his second year with The Daily Aztec. He loves watching sports, reading, and going to the gym in his free time. He mainly writes for the sports section, but also loves doing on-camera reporting and multimedia content. He previously was the assistant sports editor and blog editor for The Telescope newspaper at Palomar College. In the summer of 2022, he did an internship with Thesocialtalks digital newspaper, where he wrote for the latest news, opinion, and sports section. When he graduates from San Diego State University, he wants to be a sports writer for a popular newspaper organization or a sports reporter for a tv station.
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SDSU women’s lacrosse splits two games over the weekend