NESCAC Quarterfinal: No. 2 Amherst 11, No. 7 Bowdoin 5
Courtesy of Amherst Sports Information
AMHERST, Mass. - The second-seeded Amherst women's lacrosse team began its postseason run Saturday with an 11-5 NESCAC quarterfinal victory over seventh-seeded Bowdoin College.
The fifth NESCAC tournament meeting between the schools, Amherst improved to 3-2 against Bowdoin in league championship play and 15-1 (9-1 NESCAC) on the season. The Polar Bears fell to 8-7 (4-6 NESCAC) on the year.
Wasting little time getting on the board, Caroline Holliday netted a wrap-around goal just 2:09 after the opening face-off. Taking advantage of an Amherst foul with just under 18 minutes to play in the first, senior Betsy Sachs successfully converted a free-position attempt to knot things up at a score apiece.
Corralling a loose ball after a Jeff free position, Holliday struck again, beating Isabel Sippel with a shot to the inside post at 11:41. Less than three minutes later, the Polar Bears answered as Lindsay Picard snuck a shot past Amherst sophomore goalie Christy Forrest.
Just 1:08 after Picard's equalizer, Elizabeth Ludlow linked up with Priscilla Tyler to put the Purple & White back on top. Bouncing a shot into the Bowdoin cage, Krista Zsitvay doubled the margin at 5:50. Making good on a Devin O'Connor feed, Zsitvay netted her second tally in less than a minute to put the home team up 5-2. With 11 seconds left in the half, Rachel Passarelli dodged a couple of defenders before ripping a high shot into the net to stake the Purple & White to a 6-2 lead.
Hoping to get a rally started, Bowdoin's Taylor Wilson spun off a defender and fired a low shot into the left side of the cage with 21:10 remaining in regulation. Carrying the ball on the right side approaching the 15-minute mark, Mia Haughton made a move toward the net before tucking a shot inside the near post.
The Polar Bears' Jordan Smith pulled Bowdoin back within three at 12:55, but Meghan Mills answered with consecutive goals inside of the 10-minute mark to help stave off the visitors' comeback bid. Going a perfect 13-for-13 on clears, Amherst finished with a decisive 27-8 shot advantage and a 14-5 edge in ground balls.
Mills had three goals to lead the Jeff attack, while Zsitvay, Tyler and Holliday each had a pair of scores. Forrest finished with three saves in the win, while Sippel had 12 stops. Picard, Sachs, Smith and Wilson accounted for the five Bowdoin goals, while Mettler Growney recorded an assist.
Amherst returns to action on Saturday, May 3 with a NESCAC semifinal match-up against archrival Williams at Trinity College. Opening draw is set for 2:30 p.m.