Since opening the season with a decisive 12-7 victory over Connecticut College (3-7, 0-6 NESCAC), the women’s lacrosse team’s season has taken a turn for the indecisive. After dropping four of its next five games, the team has rebounded over the past two weeks, recording three straight victories, including two conference victories against Bates (7-4, 3-3 NESCAC) and Trinity (7-2, 3-2 NESCAC), to enter April with a 5-4 record overall, 3-3 in NESCAC play.
The string of early losses, a number of which came in close games against top-ranked teams, has motivated the team rather than discouraged it, said captain Natalie Rudin ’19.
“We are using [the losses] as motivation to work harder, train harder and make sure we are ready for our next competition moving forward,” said Rudin. “We have been working hard and getting better every day.”
After the slow start, the team seemed to turn a corner in its 17-15 victory over Trinity last Saturday, said Paige Brown ’19.
“I think at the start of our season, we were getting used to each other,” said Brown. “We really hit our stride this past weekend with our win against Trinity.”
The team has set its sights on one goal in particular: winning the NESCAC Championship.
“Coming off of last season, in which we lost in the [NESCAC Championship game], we are really motivated to redeem ourselves and get that title this year,” said Rudin.
Erin Morrissey ’19 said that she would love a rematch against Middlebury, who defeated the Polar Bears 6-3 in last year’s NESCAC championship game.
“We really want to see Middlebury again because we barely lost to them a few weeks ago, and we kind of want revenge from that game and from the NESCAC Championship last year,” said Morrissey.
In the meantime, the Polar Bears are looking forward to a competitive season against strong NESCAC teams. Seven NESCAC teams are currently ranked in the top 20 of the DIII Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association standings. Bowdoin is currently ranked 14th overall and seventh in the NESCAC.
“The thing that is exciting about playing lacrosse in the NESCAC is that the level of competition is extremely high, [and] every in-conference game is big competition,” said Rudin.
Accordingly, the team has been working hard in preparation for its upcoming games.
“We practice for two to three hours every afternoon, and we participate in in-season lifts once or twice a week to maintain our strength,” said Morrissey.
While the Polar Bears are working hard, Brown, Morrissey and Rudin have all been enjoying their last season on the team.
“It’s super rare that you get to run around with your friends for two hours after school everyday, so I think we really take advantage of that and enjoy each others’ company,” said Morrissey.
The Polar Bears have two home games scheduled in the coming week, the first against Plymouth State (3-3) on Sunday and the second against Colby (6-2, 3-2 NESCAC) on Wednesday.
If the team’s last three games are any indication, there is cause for excitement.
“I think the best is yet to come,” said Brown.
The Polar Bears will play Plymouth State at home on Sunday at 12 p.m.