COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s lacrosse team steps out of conference this weekend to face Louisville at 1 p.m. Sunday at U of L Lacrosse Stadium in Louisville, Ky. The Buckeyes (5-4, 0-1 ALC) will look to rebound from their loss to No. 9 Florida a week ago when they meet the Cardinals (8-1, 1-0 Big East) for the third time in the series history.

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Winners of three of their last four games, the Buckeyes enter the game Sunday at Louisville with a 5-4 record after victories against American (16-4), St. Bonaventure (19-4), Canisius (23-7), Notre Dame (13-8) and California (16-4). The team has outscored opponents 87-27 in games won and average 13 goals per game in all contests this season. Ohio State has won 59 percent (128-218) of its draw controls this season, topping its opponents in all but two games this season.
     The Buckeyes are led in scoring by junior Alayna Markwordt and senior Brittney Zerhusen. Markwordt has a team-high 44 points off team-leading totals of 28 goals and 16 assists, while Zerhusen is second with 23 goals and nine assists for 32 points. Annie Carruthers, the preseason ALC goalie of the year, has started all nine games between the pipes and has a 9.31 goals-against average with a .417 save percentage on 158 shots faced. On the draw, Jayme Beard and Gabby Capuzzi are forces to be reckoned with, securing 30 and 27 draws, respectively.

Ohio State boasts the third-ranked offense in the American Lacrosse Conference, scoring 13 goals per game, a mark which also stands as 22nd in the nation. Alayna Markwordt is third in the ALC and 19th in the NCAA by contributing 3.11 of those goals per game, while in total points, she is second in the league and 10th in the country. Jayme Beard and Gabby Capuzzi join Markwordt among the nation’s leaders as the duo is fourth and fifth, respectively, in the ALC (21st and 30th in the nation) in draw controls with 30 and 27 on the season.

Maghan Beaudrault scored the game-winner with 36 seconds remaining in regulation to give Ohio State a dramatic 16-15 victory over Louisville March 13 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. The tally was Beaudrault’s second of the game and came just 32 seconds after Brittney Zerhusen tied the game at 15.
     After Louisville jumped out to the early 5-3 lead, the Buckeyes came back behind three first half goals off the bench by Kirsten Donahue to head into the half with a 10-9 advantage. The Buckeyes pushed that lead to 14-12 after Zerhusen scored with 12:38 remaining. However, the Cardinals scored three unanswered before Ohio State scored a pair to take the lead for good with less than a minute remaining. Kelly Haggerty scored three goals and added four assists, one on the game-winner, while Gabby Capuzzi added four goals.

Louisville is coming off an upset win over No. 13 Vanderbilt, 12-6, Wednesday afternoon on its home field, marking its first win over a Top 15 team in program history. Liz Lovejoy led all scorers with four goals on the day, while the Cardinals’ defense limited the Commodores to 13 shots. Lovejoy currently is second on the team in goals (29) and tied for second in points (37).
Bergan Foley is the team’s leading scorer with 37 goals and three assists this season. Now 8-1 on the year, Louisville has won each of its last two games after suffering the only loss of the season vs. then-No. 7 Stanford, 16-12, March 24. Kellie Young, the only head coach in Louisville lacrosse history, is in her fourth season with the Cardinals. The Buckeyes have captured each of the two meetings with Louisville during that time.

The Buckeyes rallied from a seven-goal deficit to pull within one before eventually falling to ninth-ranked Florida, 10-8, last Saturday at Donald R. Dizney Stadium in Gainesville, Fla. With the loss, the Buckeyes fell to 5-4 on the season, while the Gators extended their winning streak to 10 games and sit at 10-1 on the season. Alayna Markwordt was the lone multi-goal scorer for Ohio State, tallying four on the day, including two in the second-half of the OSU comeback. Florida’s Kitty Cullen, one of the Top 5 scorers in the country, topped the Buckeye attacker by putting six in the back of the net highlighted by five in the Gators’ seven unanswered to the start the game.

Ohio State returns home to Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium at noon Sunday, April 10, to face ALC foe and 13th-ranked Vanderbilt. The Commodores will look to rebound from their loss to Louisville when they meet Johns Hopkins Sunday before traveling to Columbus next weekend. The game vs. Vanderbilt will be the “Buckeyes Go Pink” game with fans being encouraged to don the color pink in support and recognition of breast cancer awareness.