LAKELAND - Florida Southern continued its hot play at home here Saturday afternoon as they scored three second half goals to help the 12th-ranked Moccasins post a 9-8 victory over seventh-ranked Limestone at Bryant Stadium.
The win was the Moccasins (5-2) fourth straight victory since opening the season with back-to-back losses to Grand Valley State and Adelphi. It is the second time in school history that the Mocs had defeated a No. 7 nationally ranked team as they earned a 12-11 double overtime win over then seventh-ranked Stonehill in 2014.
Saturday's game was a back-and-forth affair in the first half as the two teams combined for 12 goals and 21 shots as the teams were tied 6-6 at the half.
The Mocs win was keyed by three goals and an assist by senior attacker Ashley Robertson (Ellicott City, Md.), while junior attacker Kendall Kerge (Edgewater, Md.) and freshman Casey O'Brien (Morris Plains, N.J.) each had two goals in the victory.
O'Brien got the scoring started in Saturday's game as she took a pass from sophomore midfielder Emily Santoli (Fort Salonga, N.Y.) for a goal just a little under seven minutes into the game.
The Mocs would push its lead to 3-0 in the opening 10 minutes as sophomore attacker Meghan O'Brien (Rochester, N.Y.) scored her sixth goal of the season with 22:51 left in the opening half and Kerge scored her team leading 18th goal of the season with 20:22 left in the first half.
Trailing 3-0, Limestone got on the scoreboard on a goal by Kathleen Gasset just 10-plus minutes into the game.
Moccasin sophomore attacker Cayla Shawfield (Oviedo, Fla.) gave FSC a 4-1 lead on goal with 18:41 left. Shawfield goal was assisted by Santoli, who finished with career high four assists.
The Saints, who fell to 5-1 on the season, would get back-to-back goals from Shannon Sisk and Courtney Lafler to drop FSC's lead to 4-3.
After Robertson and Kerge gave the Mocs a 6-3 lead with 11:10 left in the half, Limestone would close the quarter with three consecutive goals to tie the game at 6-all at the half.
Limestone's scoring run reached four straight goals as they opened the second half with a free position goal by Kendra Sheppard just four minutes into in the half to give the Saints a 7-6 lead.
The Mocs, though, would tie the game nearly three-plus minutes later on a goal by Casey O'Brien off a pass from Santoli. Robertson would then score the next two Moccasin goals, including the latter goal coming on a free position shot, to take a 9-7 lead with 7:52 left in the game.
Sisk would add her third goal of the game with 1:16 remaining to push within a goal at 9-8. Sisk's goal would prove to be the final one of the game for both teams.
Limestone, who outshot the Mocs, 12-9 in the first half, finished the game holding a 16-14 edge in shots. In addition, both teams had 14 shots on goal in the game.
Junior Taylor Gillis (Bel Air, Md.) improved to 5-2 between the pipes as she recorded six saves and allowed eight goals.
In addition to Sisk's three goals, Lafler added two goals, while Carleigh Davis recorded five assists in the loss.
The Mocs held a 13-11 edge in ground balls, including four from redshirt sophomore Parrisa Sakinejad (Millers, Md.) and caused 13 turnovers for game, including three apiece from Sakinejad and senior defender Rachael Griffith (Elliott City, Md.) each had three in the victory.
Sydney Teeter went the distance in goal for the Saints as she finished with five saves, had five ground balls and allowed nine goals in the loss.
The Mocs will return to action on Thursday, March 17 in Bradenton against Hamilton. The game is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m.