W. Lacrosse loses quarterfinal game

With one game left in the regular season, the Colby women’s lacrosse team travelled down to Bates this past Wednesday.

Adding to their historic Maine rivalry, the Mules and Bobcats came into this game with identical overall records (11-3), identical NESCAC records (6-3), and equal national rankings (tenth). To raise the stakes even further, this final rival contest determined who received home field advantage against one another only three days later.

The importance of the match clearly struck the Colby side as they ground out an 8-6 victory over the Bobcats. Three Mules scored a couple of goals each as Lexie Perticone ’17, Kelsey Bowen ’18 and Gemma Bready ’17 found gaps in the exposed the Bates defense. Throughout the first half, the Mules and Bobcats expectedly went hoof to paw as the time ended 5-5 apiece. However, riding the suffocating defense of Emilie Klein ’17, the Mules limited Bates to only one goal for the half. Midfielder Klein forced three ground balls and five turnovers, one more than the entire Bates squad. Good defense translates to good offense, as Klein, the clutch player of the game, scored the go ahead goal with 26 minutes left. Perticone’s second goal in the last 17 minutes sealed a Mule victory and a chance for the home crowd to watch a playoff victory.

The team extended their playoff appearance count to 16 and holds a 10-5 quarterfinal record throughout the span. However, the Mules have not won the NESCAC title in seven years. The back-to-back 08-09 championship seasons are but distant achievements that Colby athletics as a whole seem to miss.

Coming off a gutsy win only three days prior, the team looked to take advantage of the home crowd for the starting playoff game last Saturday. With 20 minutes left in the first half, a smooth goal by co-captain Abigail Hooper ’16 opened the scoring and a repeat of Wednesday seemed to be underway.

Unfortunately, the taste of recent defeat switched the Bobcats into gear as they stifled Colby’s offense and defense in the remaining time. The Bates squad rallied to a definitive 9-3 victory moving on to face the top seeded Trinity in the semi finals.

It is foolish to say the Bobcats wanted it more, but it is evident that they simply played better. The pair of All-Americans played up to their title; Morah Greenstein netted three goals and dished out a pair of assists while goaltender Hannah Jeffery created a wall on the defensive end, saving ten shots, six of which were in the second half.

With the tough loss, the Mules fell short of the NESCAC championship and now must look towards an at-large bid into the NCAA Division III Tournament. The window to success is now less apparent, but it’s still open.

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