The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

Women’s Lacrosse Implements New Players and Styles Heading Into Spring Season

Colgate Athletics / Olivia Hokanson

The Colgate University women’s lacrosse team is back on the field for the 2024 Spring season. The Raiders’ off-season preparation and thirst for improvement from last season has created an exciting suspense for what is to come. The players shared their expectations and notable changes for the season.  

Hoping to improve off the 4-11 record from last season, the Colgate Raiders look to find success, starting with attainable goals. Junior captain Nelle Kniffin spoke on the team’s focus this season.

“One of our biggest goals this year is to beat every winnable team,” Kniffin said. “In the past, we have played down or not capitalized on games that are definitely within our wheelhouse.” 

With their eyes on the Patriot League Championship in May, the team tackled a difficult off-season training program in preparation to reach their goals. The team obtained a new strength and conditioning coach in July 2023, bringing a new energy and intensity to their training. In the off-season, the team conquered “The Program,” an intensive boot camp where two navy seals ran the team through rigorous workouts over the course of two days. This pushed the team to its limits both physically and mentally.

Kniffin shared her positive experience in “The Program,” and expressed how it will lead to success this season. 

That experience taught us so much about being a good teammate and leader,” Kniffin said. “Those values have definitely been implemented into our philosophy and will help us on the field.” 

The Colgate women’s lacrosse program has not seen a Patriot League title in over a decade, but their determination is unfazed. Their prevailing efforts fueled their development for the 2024 season. In the off-season, the women’s lacrosse program built its values on the importance of team chemistry.

Kniffin discussed the team’s unique X-factor this season, which she believes will lead to success and wins on the field. 

Our team is the closest we have ever been,” Kniffin said. “Being best friends makes the game more fun and makes people not only work hard for themselves, but also for their teammate next to them.” 

The women’s lacrosse team looks to improve their 1-8 away game record from last season. The program can substantially improve their league standings by capitalizing on the home-field advantage and raising their on-the-road record. The Raiders host eight home games this season compared to only six in 2023. The slight schedule change has the potential to pay great dividends in Patriot League success, as five of the eight matchups are Patriot League opponents.

Senior captain Kyra Lucey, totaling 53 career goals and 109 points, shared her wisdom for achieving success at home and on the road.

“We have to focus on the little things in order to make the big things a reality,” Lucey said. 

The Raiders hope to translate their small successes into their ultimate post-season goal: a championship. Lucey believes the success in the little things will come from their program’s most influential change in the off-season.  

“More than anything, we have just shifted our culture towards one that expects a higher level from everyone on the team,” Lucey said. 

Sophomore defenseman Ellrose Hanlon spoke on the team’s young roster and how it translates to positive changes for the upcoming spring 2024 season.

“With new players and styles merging into our team, we are quickly learning from each other and setting new goals,” Hanlon said. 

The Raiders see their young roster as an advantage, looking to develop their underclassmen for future success and create fresh grounds to establish their new culture of winning.

The women’s lacrosse team suffered a tough 6-21 loss against Harvard University last Saturday, Feb. 17. Fortunately, the season is in its infancy, and they have 13 regular season games remaining to see their off-season efforts come to fruition. The women’s lacrosse team plays this Saturday, March 2, against University at Albany (UAlbany) at Crown Field in Andy Kerr Stadium. The Raiders have the opportunity for payback against UAlbany after last season’s tight 14-19 loss

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