In their last game of the regular season, Colgate women’s lacrosse scored on an overtime goal to earn their first Patriot League Tournament berth since 2016, downing Lafayette in a dramatic 13-12 victory.
Sophomore attack Payton Gabriel provided the heroic game-clinching score with 1:59 left to go in overtime.
“To have this senior class go out this way is one of the best feelings that you can have. You could tell the team was rallying behind them because the four of them have been super strong and steady, as well as amazing leaders,” head coach Heather Young said.
It was a game of runs, with Colgate scoring three of the final four goals in regulation to knot up the mark at 12. Captains and midfielders Natalie Washuta and Haley O’Hanlon played a pivotal role on their senior day, celebrating by scoring goals late to tie up the game at the 2:03 mark. Junior defender Madeline Barcia netted the go-ahead goal to put the Raiders up 12-11 on a trick play, but Lafayette quickly rebounded to tie the score at 12 with 18 seconds to go in the game, setting the stage for overtime.
“It was very exciting to get my first career goal. When coach pulled me over to say we were going to run a play that we haven’t really practiced, she said Haley was going to pretend to come back over and you’re going to cut through the open lane. I said, ‘I’m going to shoot?’ and she said yes. It was really exciting but I wouldn’t have been able to do that without my teammates,” Barcia said.
It was an overall back-and-forth affair seeing as neither team was able to pull ahead by more than one during the first half. Colgate found itself down by two with 13:07 to go in the second half at a 11-9 deficit, after which neither team was able to score for a duration of 8 minutes before Colgate was able to get back into rhythm. Two highlight performances for the Raiders included a hat trick from Gabriel for her fourth on the season and a five-point game from first-year attack Danielle Van Calcar.
“Payton had a great day. She was amazing in the ride and was great cutting back to the ball. She had an opportunity in the first part of overtime to win it and didn’t get the goal but had the confidence to take it on the winner was awesome,” Young said.
Colgate’s 10 wins are its most since recording 10 in 2015. With this win, Colgate heads into a home-field quarterfinal as a fourth seed against fifth seeded Boston University. The game is set for 4 p.m. on Tuesday at Beyer-Small ’76 Field.
“Having a home game this week is going to be huge. My freshman year we traveled and last year we didn’t make the tournament so it’s great for our team and our program to be able to host the quarterfinal. It’s going to be great,” Barcia said.
Contact Neil Ahlawat at email@example.com.