LOS ANGELES - The Haverford College women's lacrosse team continued its season-opening surge with a 10-9 non-conference victory over host Occidental College at Jack Kemp Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.
The brilliant California sunshine offered the perfect backdrop for the Fords (4-0) to extend their shining start to the 2013 campaign.
Converting a pass from Kenny Likes, sophomore Hannah Morgan tallied the game winner as her second of the afternoon broke a 9-9 tie with 3:36 left on the clock. Haverford needed a strong defensive effort after Morgan's go-ahead goal and the squad delivered by holding the Tigers (4-4) without a shot over the remainder of the contest.
Morgan's 10th of the season capped a back-and-forth second half that saw three lead changes and four ties. Occidental scored the first three goals of the final session to take its first lead of the afternoon at 6-5 just over four minutes into the second half.
Likes knotted the game on a free position shot five minutes later and Grace Stockbower restored the Fords' advantage with her first of the season off a feed from Likes at 15:58.
After Tori Larson scored unassisted 30 seconds later to account for the third tie of the day, Megan Gallagher notched two goals in the span of a minute to give Haverford a 9-7 lead with 11 and a half minutes remaining.
The Tigers responded with two of their own to forge a 9-9 tie with four minutes on the clock but Morgan and the Fords would not be denied as they registered their second straight 10-9 victory.
The opening half saw Haverford outshoot Occidental 13-6 on its way to a 5-3 lead at the break.
Sophomore Diana Perry led the Fords on offense with three goals, all in the first half, while Morgan and Gallagher each finished with two. Likes, Stockbower and Christina Gould accounted for the remainder of the scoring.
Freshman Amanda Fleming joined Perry as a factor in draw controls with four apiece.
Rebecca Belding paced the Tigers, ranked 20th in Lacrosse Magazine's preseason top 20, with three goals while Larson and Beebe Finch-Sanders each chipped in with two.
Goalie Shannon Horn (3-0) made six saves to earn her third win of the season while Kirsten Hee (4-3) suffered the loss for Occidental.
Haverford continues its California swing on Friday when it visits Whittier College. The contest against the Poets begins at 4:30 p.m. PT.