Women's Lacrosse

Kayla Treanor’s career at Syracuse ends with 19-9 semifinal loss to Maryland

Courtesy of Syracuse Athletic Communications

Kayla Treanor had a record-setting career at Syracuse, but with Syracuse's loss to Maryland, her final season with the Orange came to a close. On Friday night, she broke the Division I record for draw controls in a season.

CHESTER, Pa. — Kayla Treanor stood slackly near midfield. Her stick hung limply from her right hand. She seemed to be staring beyond the end of the field. Cars passed over the Commodore Berry Bridge and water lapped at the shore of the Delaware River just beyond the stadium. Inside, Maryland players with a nine-goal lead rushed at the net yet again. They had beat Syracuse’s backup goalie a sixth time.

Treanor walked slowly to the sideline. She exchanged her orange offensive stick for a white one to take the draw. She had made the same methodical walk all night as Syracuse fell deeper and deeper into an inescapable hole.

Later at the postgame press conference, when asked about walking off the field for the final time, she leaned back to collect herself. Her eyes watered.

“I’ll never be able to put the jersey back on,” she said, her voice wavering. “But it’s been quite a ride.”

Taylor Cummings waited in the circle. It was the same player who edged Treanor for the Tewaraaton Award twice, had been been the No. 1 recruit in their class to Treanor’s No. 2 and ended all four chances at the only award she’d ever wanted: a national championship.

With a 10-goal deficit and the mercy clock running down from 30 seconds, Treanor flicked the ball to herself. The draw control gave her 217 for the season, a new NCAA Division I record. When asked about the record, she deflected as she always has, heaping praise on her coaches and teammates.

Treanor helped Syracuse edge Maryland in the draw controls, 17-13, which was SU’s only major statistical advantage on a night when nothing went Syracuse’s way. Treanor and fourth-seeded Syracuse (19-6, 5-2 Atlantic Coast) lost to top-seeded Maryland (22-0, 5-0 Big Ten), 19-9, on the season’s final weekend for the fourth year in a row Friday night at Talen Energy Stadium.

Treanor became the second player in NCAA history to post 400 career points but finished with just one on Friday. She has recorded one point or fewer in just eight of her 91 career games.

“Kayla Treanor is amazing,” SU head coach Gary Gait said. “Greatest Syracuse lacrosse player ever. There isn’t another player in the country that you could ask to do something … and then go out and set records. She’s the best player in college lacrosse.”

The senior attack hadn’t taken the draw since she played at Niskayuna (New York) High School four years ago. But she’d assumed the position for Syracuse after last year’s draw specialist, Kailah Kempney, graduated. Treanor broke the single-game draws record (19) in the Orange’s opening game. She rewrote the school record book and did the same for the NCAA.

That didn’t help Friday. All-American Alice Mercer faceguarded her all night. When Treanor tried to bring the ball within the 8-meter, UMD head coach Cathy Reese said she was prepared. The always waiting double-team pushed her away from the net and the goal.

With 1:09 to go in the game and a nine-goal lead, Maryland’s Taylor Hensh slashed toward the net and scored for a fourth time.

Treanor slowly walked to the sideline. She exchanged her orange stick for the white one. She lined up against Cummings.

The final buzzer sounded. Treanor averted her eyes. She walked away. She passed a stream of celebrating white-and-red jerseys. She did not look at them.

“With that draw control,” the announcer said, “Syracuse’s Kayla Treanor has broken the NCAA Division I record for draw controls in a single season.”

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