Courtesy Trinity Sports Information
HARTFORD, Conn. – The Colby College Mules scored the last seven goals of the game, including the game-winner with 12:07 left in the second half from junior midfielder Claire Donegan (Great Falls, Va.) to first-year attacker Lindsey McKenna (Fairfield, Conn.), to take a 14-7 win over the Bowdoin College Polar Bears in the semifinal round of the NESCAC Women’s Lacrosse Championship this afternoon on Trinity College’s Sheppard Field. Colby improves to 13-3, advancing to the final for the fifth consecutive season.
Seeded No. 3 in the tourney field, Colby will play top-seeded Trinity, which won, 13-12, over Tufts in today's other semifinal game on Sheppard Field, in the NESCAC Championship Sunday at noon. The Bantams and Mules played each other in the 2008 NESCAC Final at Middlebury won by Colby, 14-12. The winner of tomorrow's final will earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Bowdoin falls to 14-3 with its first loss in seven games and hopes to receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. The game started 90 minutes late (4 p.m.) due to two lightning delays in the earlier game.
The first 50-plus minutes was a seesaw battle with neither team leading by more than a single goal until a score by Colby senior attackman Anne Geraghty (Westford, Mass.) with 1:15 left gave Colby a 9-7 lead. Bowdoin led, 5-4, at the break thanks to an unassisted tally with 6:29 on the clock by junior attackman Liz Clegg (Hudson, Ohio). Donegan tied the game quickly after intermission with a goal on a free position shot with 1:35 gone, and Colby rookie Katharine Eddy (Cheshire, Conn.) scored less than a minute later to give the Mules their first lead since 2-1 at 6-5 with at the 27:28 mark. Bowdoin sophomore attackman Carolyn Gorajek (Hightstown, N.J.) sandwiched two goals around a Caitlin Briody (Hopewell, N.J.) Colby tally to account for a 7-7 tie with 13:03 remaining, but Donegan fed McKenna in front on the go-ahead score from behind and to the right of the net at the 12:07 mark. Colby went on to score six more times with Bowdoin fighting uphill against four yellow cards in the final 5:32.
Donegan and sophomore attacker Kate Pistel (Amherst, Mass.) led all scorers with three goals and two assists apiece for Colby, while McKenna scored three times, and Briody tallied twice. Senior goalkeeper Sarah Warnke (Lakeville, Mass.) made eight saves in the Mule goal and senior tri-captain defender Lexi Crook (South Burlington, Vt.) notched three ground balls and four draw controls. Gorajek had four goals and Clegg scored a pair for Bowdoin, while sophomore backstop Tara Connolly (Simsbury, Conn.) made 10 stops for the Polar Bears. Bowdoin came up empty on six free-position shots.