NEW LONDON, Conn. – The Connecticut College women's lacrosse team dropped a NESCAC contest in heartbreaking fashion to Williams by an 11-10 score on Saturday afternoon at Silfen Field.
Neither team led by more than a goal in the tightly contested game which featured 10 ties and three lead changes. Trailing 10-9, Connecticut College was able to even the score when sophomore Julia Loesch (Charlotte, N.C.) scooped up a loose ball and beat goalie Kami Cisneros with a low shot at the 1:40 mark.
Williams, however, won the ensuing draw and earned a major advantage when a Connecticut College player was issued a yellow card which led to a free position attempt with 1:23 left. After pulling out on the free position, the Ephs were able to continue to possess the ball until eventually pulling ahead. Megan Mullin saved a shot taken by Emma Tenbarge, but Sophia Millay picked up the ground ball to keep the possession alive. Working from the left side, Suzanna Penikis found Kara Wollmers for the game-winning goal on a catch-and-shoot play with 24.7 seconds remaining.
The Ephs won the next draw and tried to run down the clock. Junior Erin Martin (Scituate, Mass.) was able to cause a turnover in the waning seconds, but the Camels did not have enough time to clear the ball and set up their offense in an attempt to tie the game and force overtime. The final horn sounded shortly after the ball had crossed the middle of the field, and the visitors escaped with the win.
The teams traded nine goals throughout the opening half. Connecticut College got on the board first when junior Jamie Navoni (Natick, Mass.) finished a pass from sophomore Clare Bisson (Sudbury, Mass.) just 13 seconds into the game before the Ephs answered less than three minutes later to begin the seesaw affair. Williams most notably had a goal on a free position called back with 7:47 on the clock when Tenbarge was accused of using an illegal stick. As a result, the Camels were able to take the lead into the break by a 5-4 score by getting a free position goal at the other end from Bisson in the last minute.
Williams (1-3, NESCAC 1-2) took its first lead of the game early in the second half, as Penikis and Claire Fitzpatrick scored back-to-back markers at 28:36 and 27:35. Navoni responded with two straight goals in a span of 3:08 to put the Camels back ahead, but the Ephs continued to stay within striking distance. Kallie Saudek netted an unassisted tally to give Williams a 9-8 edge with 8:44 remaining, and the visitors never trailed again.
Connecticut College had an advantage in several statistical categories despite suffering the setback. The team outshot Williams by a 29-26 margin, won 13 of the 23 draw controls and had a 27-24 advantage in ground balls. Defensively, the Camels forced the Ephs to turn the ball over on 11 of their 27 clear attempts. Navoni filled the box score by finishing with five goals, one assist, six ground balls, four draws and three caused turnovers. Bisson caused four turnovers, and Loesch netted the second hat trick of her career. Senior Megan Mullin made 11 saves between the pipes, including five on free position shots.
Fitzpatrick scored five goals, won four draws, scooped up three ground balls and caused two turnovers to lead the way for Williams. Penikis factored into four goals by notching two goals and two assists. Kami Cisneros picked up the victory in net by making eight saves in the second half. Ana Alvarenga turned away five shots during the first 30 minutes of play.
Connecticut College (2-3, NESCAC 0-2) will face another challenging opponent when it treks to Pennsylvania to face Muhlenberg of the Centennial Conference on Tuesday, March 20 at 4:00 p.m.