Women’s lax falls to strong Tufts side

Women’s lacrosse (4-6, 0-6 in the NESCAC) fell 17-12 to No. 12 Tufts on Saturday. The women took tough back-to-back losses to Bowdoin on April 1 and Bates on March 31 after going 2-1 against their competition in Florida over spring break. Before the break, the women fell 16-10 to Trinity on March 17 and conquered MIT 18-4 on March 13.

Two extended goal runs by Tufts defined the women’s game on Saturday: The first began the game, while the second took place deep into the second half. The Ephs were able to answer the first run, but ran out of time as the Jumbos pulled away toward the end of the game.

Tufts began the game strong on its home turf, reeling off five unanswered goals in the first 17 minutes. The Ephs responded when tri-captain Margie Fulton ’12 scored her first of five goals off a pass from Sam Weinstein ’13 to make the score 5-1 at 17:31. The teams then exchanged four goals apiece in the remainder of the half, with Fulton tallying two more and Lilly Wellenbach ’15 converting two on a man-up opportunity and a free-position shot. The score was 9-5 in the Jumbos’ favor at the break.

The Ephs came out of halftime hot, scoring three consecutive goals. Fulton put her fourth goal into the back of the net only 53 seconds in, giving Weinstein her team-leading third assist. Emily Jablonski ’14 followed with her fifth goal of the season at the two-minute mark to make the score 9-7. Emily Whicker ’13 then topped off the Ephs’ three-goal streak with a shorthanded score to pull the women within four at 9-8 four minutes into the third.

Tufts responded with two more goals before Stephanie Gallo ’14 scored her first goal of the game at 13:51, keeping the contest close at 11-9. However, the Jumbos then went on their second extended run of the game, scoring six straight goals over the next 14 minutes to pull away from the Ephs 17-9. Gallo, Whicker and Fulton each scored a goal, vaulting the Ephs to within five. However, the game ended with Tufts on top 17-12.

Kerry Eaton led the Tufts squad, scoring five goals. Netminder Ali Piltch ’14 tallied seven saves to Jumbo goalie Tess Shapanka’s eight.

“We had a couple of close games recently, but we keep working hard all the way through and continue to make strides with each game,” Fulton said.

Midfielder Becca McGovern ’14 also thought the women played well. “We’ve played a lot of tight games this year,” she said. “I don’t think our record so far shows just how talented we are as a team. I think this could play to our advantage in our upcoming games because teams might be quick to underestimate us in a big way.”

On April 5, the women recovered from back-to-back losses to drop Springfield 10-9 at home. After returning from Florida, the women had a week to train before taking on conference foes Bates and Bowdoin at home. Williams lost each conference game by just a point, losing to Bates 11-10 on March 31 and Bowdoin 9-8 the following day.

Over spring break, the women traveled to Florida to train and play three games. Though the team looked strong heading into its final match of the trip on March 23, the women fell to Conn. College 6-5 in a low-scoring affair. On March 21, the women took on Union and garnered a 13-11 victory. The team kicked off its spring break competition with an 18-9 win against William Smith on March 19.

On March 17, the women played their second conference game at home against Trinity, in which the Bantams handed the Ephs a 16-10 loss. In the women’s first non-conference match-up of the season on March 13, the women trounced MIT 18-4.

The women played RPI last night, but results came in too late to report. The women will next travel to No. 8 Colby on Saturday for a noon match-up.