Women’s Lacrosse Falls to Vermont in First Game: Raiders Look to Home-Opener Against Niagara


Senior attack Emily Peebles tallied two goals and caused two turnovers for the Raiders in their tilt against Vermont. 

The women’s lacrosse team lost their season opener this past Saturday to University of Vermont in a close tilt that came down to the last couple of minutes of play. Despite their best efforts, the Raiders lost the game 14-12.

Although the Raiders were unsuccessful in their matchup against Vermont, there were several aspects to this game that show a lot of promise for the Raiders as they embark on their 2016 season. Specifically, the Raiders demonstrated their offensive prowess and capability to move the ball around in the offensive zone with confidence, making crisp passes while moving off ball to generate open cutters and scoring chances. Junior midfielder Isabel Kreitler led the Raiders’ offensive surge throughout the game; she tallied a personal best of five goals and two assists. Also of note was the performance of sophomore midfielder Haley O’Hanlon, who tallied an impressive three goals and two assists. While the performance of these two players might indicate Colgate’s offense is not diverse in its threat capability, it really is. They were able to capitalize on plays that were working and realize weaknesses in Vermont’s defensive strategy. That is not to discredit the performances of O’Hanlon or Kreitler in any way; rather, it is meant to illustrate the dynamism potential in the Raiders’ offense. Threats like senior captain Kallan Murray and senior attacker Taylor Fischer will certainly be utilized in later games for the Raiders. When asked about what went well in the Vermont game, Murray had some thoughtful words to share.

“We definitely had really great moments that I think we can take a lot from. Our ride is something this year that we have worked hard to perfect and we really caught Vermont off guard by that. Our gameplan on defense involved shutting down one of their top players, and we held her out as best we could thanks to sophomore [defender] Natalie Washuta who did an awesome job,” Murray said.

Going into the season with a very positive attitude is something absolutely crucial for the Raiders. Although Vermont was able to generate some great offensive opportunities, the Raiders did a very good job of clearing the ball and utilizing the fast break on offense, seeing the open player and working the ball until a scoring opportunity presented itself. Despite these accomplishments, this was still the team’s first contest of the season and as such, there is a lot that they could improve on. Senior captain Lauren Gorajek provided some insight on what the team lacked in the game against Vermont. 

“I think we definitely need to work on our consistency. We had so many moments where we looked amazing but it didn’t last all 60 minutes. Once we can put it all together for the whole game we’ll be golden,” Gorajek said.  

Building off what Murray said about the team doing a very good job of clearing the ball–many times resulting in a fast break scenario– and the quote from Gorejek, we see a much clearer picture of what the team looked like at Vermont. Capitalizing on those fast break type opportunities only happens if the team is functioning at 100 percent the entire game. Clearly the Raiders suffered from tiredness and maybe a bit of complacency, at certain points throughout the game. While these instances were minuscule, they are things the team needs to iron out before they get into the bulky part of their season. Gorajek also commented on the team’s outlook for the season as a whole.

“We definitely always want to go far in the Patriot League but we are looking forward most to our Holy Cross and Navy games. Holy Cross is always a super close game and we have yet to beat them in my four years so we definitely want to win that game. We also beat Navy for the first time in six years last year so we’d love to feel that again,” Gorajek said. 

The Raiders host Niagara this coming Saturday for the home opener. The game is scheduled to start at 4 p.m. at Beyer-Small ’76 Stadium. Hopefully the Raiders can shake off the loss to Vermont and defeat Niagara on their home turf to give them momentum going into the season.