Returning for the first full athletic season since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, Bowdoin women’s lacrosse has barely missed a beat. In addition to wins in six of the season’s first nine games, the team has been on a recent tear, winning five games out of the previous six.
In a year where the majority of the team’s players have no NESCAC playing experience, this string of victories has required the utmost determination, diligence and collaboration, both on and off the diamond.
Goals set by the team at the beginning of the season have been instrumental in guiding gameplay. Each year, the women’s lacrosse team carries out a tradition of setting the season’s five tenets of success. Currently, these tenets include respect, communication, preparation, inclusivity and having fun.
“There’s a lot of things you need to keep in mind during a season, because it can be really discouraging if you lose,” defender Corinne Lamond ’24 said. “I think having goals in mind really keeps the team as a cohesive unit and really oriented towards the positive things that will be happening throughout the season.”
In addition to goal-setting, midfielder and team captain Fiona Bundy ’22 credited much of the team’s success to its overall lack of experience, something that has created a unique sense of cohesion that has transcended class years.
“On this team … there’s no hierarchy, and I think you really feel it this year because there’s no one returning with that [collegiate] experience,” Bundy said. “I think there’s been an amazing opportunity to reset the culture, and there’s been so much growth so far.”
Goalkeeper Izzy Cisneros ’23 agreed that she feels a greater-than-normal sense of unity amongst her teammates.
“I think that during Covid-19 and during all of the political and social movements that were going on in the U.S., our team has made such a big effort to make these [conversations] prevalent, especially with racial identity, sexual identity and gender identity topics [at the forefront]. I think rebuilding the team with those [ideas] at the center of our values has been so huge,” Cisneros said. “As a team, we have learned to appreciate each other in all different ways and also understand that lacrosse is not just a sport, but a way to bring people together and embrace those differences.”
With a stretch of away games against fierce competitors on the horizon, the team has a plan to keep its winning streak alive, much of which includes translating off-the-field camaraderie into cohesive gameplay.
“I think we do have stuff to work on in terms of experience on the field at this level, and I think that we’re now just getting our feet under us,” Bundy said. “We understand what it’s like to play ranked teams, and we need to step things up in terms of … how to win games at this high level, which I think we’re getting better at every day.”
To Lamond, improving skill is just one part of the equation. Just as important, she stressed, is embodying attitudes reflective of the chosen values that bind the team together.
“To build on our momentum, I think we’re really going to try to stick together as a team unit,” Lamond said. “Whether that’s on the defensive end, or moving up into the offensive end, and making sure that every team that we face … we outwork … and that we have this infectious positive, hardworking attitude that will carry us through into success.”