After two tough losses to Connecticut College and Amherst to start the season, the men’s lacrosse team has won seven games in a row, advancing its overall record to 7-2. The team is 4-2 in the NESCAC after beating Trinity 10-7 on Saturday and Bates 14-13 this past Wednesday night.
One of the key elements to the team’s recent success seems to be the team’s ability to be more aggressive on offense.
“I thought that we had a lot more chemistry and a lot more potency,” said Head Coach Jason Archbell about Bowdoin’s close game against Amherst on March 16, which the team lost 16-15. “It just seemed like we are attacking more, we are more aggressive. Defensively … I just felt like we had a little bit more of a sense of urgency, a little bit more of an edge, we were trying to dictate pace, we were trying to be the aggressor, and I think that’s kind of how you have to play this game to be really good at it.”
The new addition of field turf to Whittier Field also positively affected the team dynamic this year. Turf is much more of a forgiving and grass-like surface to play on than the AstroTurf which the field originally consisted of prior to the recent renovations.
“I think it’s a lot more natural of a game on the new field turf” said captain Daniel Buckman ’18. “It feels like grass. It’s what all the other NESCAC teams have been using, and you feel a little faster, and it’s also just more a more fun game, especially because you’re less banged up.”
Archbell also emphasized the overall atmosphere that the new stadium provides.
“It’s been awesome,” he said. “It’s a really unique setting for a game, which I think is positive … it’s nice having a facility like that.”
The Polar Bears took advantage of the new field against Trinity on Saturday. Although members of the team were happy with the win they felt they could have played better.
“It was a good game. It was a little sloppy, a little bit of a chippy game towards the end, but it’s good,” Buckman said. “At the end of the day, we got the win, which is all that matters, so I thought it went well, and it’s really awesome to see our team—even when things aren’t going our way—to just pull it together and just get a win.”
The weekday game against Bates proved to be another challenge.
“Preparation for the weekday games like almost starts on the weekend: figuring out how you can get your work done so you can get sleep during the week, [preparing] your body physically, hydrating and also just like mentally being ready,” said Buckman ’18.
Despite this, the team played well, beating the Bobcats with 1.4 seconds left on the clock thanks to a game winning goal scored by Sam Carlin ’19.
“I think we’re playing really good lacrosse right now, so is Bates,” said Archbell. “They’ve got the number one and number two lead scorers in the league playing for them, so defensively we’ve got to play really well and take some of the things that they do well off their plate.”
This weekend the Polar Bears will take advantage of their NESCAC bye-weekend to travel and play a non-conference match at Montclair on Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m.