THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – California Lutheran's Victoria Rose Meek tallied a hat trick as the Regals held off the Panthers 7-5 on Wednesday night at the Samuelson Aquatics Center.
With the win, CLU clinched at least the No. 3 seed in the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) Postseason Tournament.
CLU is now 18-7 overall and 10-1 in the SCIAC. The Regals currently sit in the No. 2 spot in the SCIAC, right behind Pomona-Pitzer. Chapman drops to 9-15 and 5-6 in the SCIAC.
Meek led the offense with three goals and Mackenzie Thomas was right behind her with two. Christin Hirn and Megan Seeman both added one goal. Kristi McGee had a team-high three drawn ejections. Nicole Guerriero, Erin Cunefare and Meek each had one assist.
Defensively, the Regals were on point and tallied 14 steals. Mardell Ramirez led the team with three. Guerriero, McGee, Nikki Roed and Sam Wulfestieg each added two more. Bailey Meyer was in the cage the whole game and made 11 saves.
Chapman took an early 1-0 lead with 6:22 left in the first quarter. Hirn got the Regals on the board with the assist from Guerriero and the score was all tied up. Meek then made it 2-1 with her first goal. With her back to the goal, Meek zipped the ball past the goalkeeper.
Thomas made it 3-1 as she added a goal. She threw the ball past multiple defenders and into the back of the net. Meek made it 4-1 with 24 seconds left and the Regals had the lead after the first quarter. The defense picked up in the second quarter and neither team allowed a goal. CLU held the 4-1 lead at the half. Meyer was key as she came up with save after save.
Chapman got on the board first in the second half and cut the lead to 4-2. With 4:15 left in the third, Chapman called a timeout. The Panthers came out with a well-designed play call and connected on a goal to make it 4-3. Thomas was there with the answer for the Regals and pushed the lead back to two. Meek added another goal near the end of the third. Chapman was quick to answer and CLU led 6-4 after three.
Seeman made it 7-4 as the Regals scored on the opening possession of the fourth quarter. The defenses held strong for most of the quarter, but Chapman scored and made it a 7-5 game with 1:11 left. That was as close as Chapman would get it as CLU won 7-5.
The Regals continue the season on the road for two games before coming home for the final regular season game. Cal Lutheran travels to Whittier, Calif., Saturday and will face the Poets at 11 a.m.
Results: CLU 7, CU 5
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Release by Ryan Jorgenson, Sports Information Director