Editor’s note 05/02/2021 at 10:28 a.m.: A previous version of this article stated that the NESCAC formed in 1999. This article has been updated to reflect the fact that this was when Bowdoin joined the NESCAC, not when the NESCAC formed.
Athletics at Bowdoin in the 1980s were full of both tradition and change. While many well-established Bowdoin sports teams continued to face other colleges in the area and bring back a mix of wins and losses, other teams were formed or dissolved over the decade as the College’s athletics department and athletes worked to comply with Title IX.
This time last February, the Bowdoin’s women’s ice hockey team was closing out their season after a long winter of practices and games. But this year, the team has faced—and is still facing—a multitude of challenges, such as having players living all across the United States.
Despite dropping the last four games of their season, the Bowdoin women’s hockey team is heading to the NESCAC playoffs. Going into its quarterfinal matchup against Colby on Saturday, the team is hoping to rebuild some momentum to cap off a season of growth following last winter, when the team went 3-19-2 and missed out on a NESCAC playoff spot for the first time since 2001.
After finishing with the program’s worst-ever record of 3-19-2 (2-13-1 NESCAC), making them the only team to miss out on the NESCAC tournament last winter, the Bowdoin women’s varsity ice hockey team has made strides to correct last year’s faults and return to the NESCAC playoffs.
Last year, the women’s ice hockey team had a disappointing season, finishing with a record of 3-19-2 (NESCAC 2-13-1) and missing out on the NESCAC playoffs for the first time since 2001. This year, however, the team is looking to turn last season’s disappointments around.
Sidney J. Watson Arena is festooned with an extensive collection of banners celebrating the accomplishments of Bowdoin hockey teams past. However, the year 2018-2019 will not be appearing on any of these decorations. For the first time in 18 years, both the Bowdoin men’s and women’s hockey teams failed to reach the NESCAC playoffs.
As the postseason approaches, the women’s hockey team is facing a lot of pressure to keep its season alive. With a losing record for the season, the Polar Bears (3-16-1, NESCAC 2-10) need to defeat both Connecticut College (9-8-2, NESCAC 5-5-2) and Trinity (8-9-3, NESCAC 5-4-3) in the next two weeks to be able to compete in the NESCAC Championships.
After ending the last two seasons with losses to Middlebury in the semifinals of the NESCAC tournament last year, the women’s ice hockey team (0-4, 0-2 NESCAC) is set its sights on the NESCAC championship this season.
He may be taking off his jersey and helmet, but Derek Whitmore isn’t leaving the rink anytime soon. Travelling the world to play ice hockey, leaving his family at a young age to compete and working through injury after injury, rep after rep, practice after practice, Whitmore’s love for the game never faltered.
The women’s hockey team (10-8-3, NESCAC 4-7-3) scored a 5-4 victory against Connecticut College (14-4-4, NESCAC 9-2-3) last weekend. Prior to facing the Polar Bears, the Camels were ranked No. 2 in the league and had only suffered one conference loss against No.
Last Saturday, the women’s hockey team (4-0-1, NESCAC 1-0-1) broke Saint Anselm’s 23-game winning streak with a comeback in the third quarter to win 3-2. The team then continued to dominate with its first shutout of the season, beating University of Southern Maine 3-0 in Tuesday’s midweek match up.
After ending the 2016-2017 season with a loss in the NESCAC semifinals to eventual champions Middlebury, the women’s hockey team is looking to come back strong this year. The season kicks off with a home game against in-state rival, Colby, today at 7 p.m.