Two disappointing losses in the Northeast Region Championship marked the completion of the women's rugby fall season last weekend. Bowdoin became the sole squad of four competing teams to not qualify for nationals in the spring.

Though the Polar Bears controlled possession early on against the Norwich Cadets on Saturday, they were held scoreless for the first and only time this season.

Head Coach MaryBeth Mathews praised the Cadets' relentless defense.

"Each time we came inches to scoring, they forced a turnover and counterattacked," she said.

This continuous pressure led to a yellow card against Bowdoin that forced the team to play a player down for 10 minutes, in which time Norwich capitalized and scored three tries to go into halftime up 36-0.

The Polar Bears came out strong in the second half and held Norwich scoreless for long stretches, with strong tackling efforts from captain Katie Mathews '12 and juniors Uche Esonu, Dani McAvoy and Kerry Townsend. But in the end, the Cadets overpowered the Polar Bears and won the game 56-0.

"In the second half, Bowdoin really pulled themselves together and played phenomenal defense, but they were pressured into mistakes," said MaryBeth Mathews. "It was a really fluid attack and they swarmed the ball with support."

The following day, Bowdoin played in the consolation game against Rutgers, jumping to an early lead off a try by Townsend yet heading into the half down 15-5.

Bowdoin showed signs of life in the second half with another Townsend try, but Rutgers held on for a 20-12 win.

The loss ended Bowdoin's hope of competing at nationals, concluding the team's fall season with a 10-3 record.

Bowdoin will schedule non-league matches and attend tournaments in the spring. The team hopes to recruit new players from around campus and help rookies work on perfecting their skills.

-Compiled by Luke Lamar.