Queens of the Hill: Women’s Lax Takes First

Edouard Boulat

After a slow start to the season, Colgate’s women’s lacrosse team has turned things around by winning three of its last four games. The Raiders visited winless Lafayette last Friday and were looking to stay undefeated in Patriot League play. Colgate did just that by scoring 10 of the games’ first 11 goals on its way to a 16-11 victory. First-year Kate Bergstrom scored three goals within a four-minute span in the first half to pace the Raiders, which helped the team garner a 11-3 halftime lead. The scoring outburst was inevitable, for Colgate outshot Lafayette, 26-7 in the opening frame. The Raiders opened up the second period with five straight goals, and in the process, built up a solid enough lead that allowed Head Coach Heather Bliss to put all of the healthy subs in the game. Although the Leopards scored eight straight goals to end the game, victory was never in doubt.

“The game against Lafayette was a solid team effort,” Bergstrom said. “Everyone played extremely well and there was a ton of hustle all over the field. It was nice to get another win against a Patriot League opponent.”

Senior Jessica Van der Meulen was outstanding against Lafayette, scoring six points on four goals and two assists. Bergstrom finished the game with a career high four goals. Junior Molly Carroll added three goals and an assist. Junior Ashley Didio, first year Colleen Bubnack, and sophomores Lindsay Pittard and Katie Holland combined for five goals and three assists. Junior goalkeeper Sara Drexel earned the win for the Raiders, posting eight saves. The Raiders are now 3-0 in the Patriot League.

The Raiders were back on the field just two days later when they hosted yet another nationally ranked team in No. 14/16 Oregon on Sunday, March 30th at Tyler’s Field. Just like they had previously done against nationally ranked Denver, the Raiders were not intimidated and refused to be pushed around. Finding themselves down 11-4 with a little less than 20 minutes left on the clock, Colgate buckled down on both sides of the ball, giving Oregon everything it could handle in the closing stages of the game. The Raiders scored the last five goals of the game and did not allow a score in the last 18 minutes and 46 seconds. But in the end, the Raiders fell just short, losing 11-9.

“Oregon was a very tough loss,” Bergstrom said. “We felt like we outplayed them in the second half and were very close to pulling off the win. Our coaches were definitely encouraged with our play. To hang around with a top twenty team like we did is something we are proud of. The team atmosphere is really positive right now.”

Three Raiders recorded two goals against Oregon, including junior Molly Carroll, first-year Colleen Bubnack, and junior Maddie Kearns. Senior Jessica Van der Meulen contributed a goal and an assist. For the second stragith week, Carroll won the Patriot League Defensive Player of the Week award for her efforts. The loss drops Colgate to 5-7 overall on the year, while Oregon improves to 9-3.

Colgate will put its undefeated Patriot League record on the line when the Raiders visit Bucknell on Saturday.