After a 12-7 defeat of nationally ranked No. 15 Boston University Wednesday, the women’s lacrosse team — also ranked 15th — will look to string together three consecutive wins for the first time this season when it takes on No. 11 Dartmouth tomorrow.
At the Terriers’ Nickerson Field, midfielder Katie Sargent ’05 paced the Bulldogs (4-2, 1-0 Ivy), torching BU goalie Anne Sheridian for five goals and one assist. For the second straight game, the Elis played a strong second half, out-shooting BU 16-5. Tomorrow, in a matchup between two of the three teams that shared the 2003 Ivy crown, the Bulldogs will try to avenge last season’s heartbreaking home defeat at the hands of the Big Green (2-2, 0-0).
On Wednesday, the Terriers held a 3-2 advantage after a Kelly Trahon goal at 20:05 of the first half, but Yale rallied to ensure that BU would never hold the lead again.
The Bulldog offense took over, scoring five straight goals, including back-to-back tallies from midfielder Sophie Melniker ’04, who recorded a hat trick in the game. All-Ivy midfielder Miles Whitman ’04 capped the run at 8:57 of the first with the first of her two goals.
“Our attack just worked really well together,” Sargent said. “Most of the goals in the game were scored off of assists, which shows [how well the offense is working].”
Half of Yale’s 12 goals were assisted.
Though Whitman’s goal output was lower than in her season average, the Eli midfielder dissected the Terrier defense with her passes, dishing out five assists.
“[BU was] looking to go early on the double-[team] with Miles [Whitman] and Sophie [Melniker] and that left open opportunities,” Sargent said.
The Elis, however, could not sustain their offensive dominance, surrendering two goals in an 18-second span in the half’s closing minutes.
“Consistency has been something we’ve been working on,” Yale head coach Amanda O’Leary said. “People have to go out with an attitude that ‘we’re going to win this game.'”
Terrier Lindsay Lewis’ second of the game brought BU within one goal at 7-6, but Sargent went on a tear, scoring three of the game’s next four goals and extending the Eli lead to three at 14:08 of the second half.
Whitman’s goal at 3:40 gave Yale the game’s last four goals and a comfortable margin of victory.
Goalkeeper Lonnie Sarnell ’06 made five saves on 12 shots on goal.
“We just played solid defense all around,” defender Jen Kessel ’04 said. “We really didn’t make too many mistakes.”
The Bulldogs will especially need to minimize mistakes when they face a tough Big Green squad in Hanover tomorrow.
Last season, the Elis fell 7-6 at Johnson Field. A late rally fell short after the potential game-tying goal clanked off the iron in the game’s closing minutes.
“It’s going to be a great game; we’re both strong teams,” Sargent said. “We definitely want to get them back for last year’s game.
The Big Green return three 2003 All-Ivy Leaguers — midfielder Katieanne Christian, goalkeeper Devon Willis and midfielder Lana Smith, who was also the Big Green’s leading scorer during the 2003 season.
Though Dartmouth is currently sitting at .500, its losses have come against two of the top ten teams in the nation. The Big Green suffered a 7-6 overtime loss to James Madison University March 6 and an 11-8 defeat against No. 9 University of Maryland March 23.
The Bulldogs also fell to James Madison Dukes — 9-7 in the Eli season opener February 29.
“They have a strong goalie and so we’re not really going to change too much of our game plan,” Sargent said. “It’s going to be about who capitalizes on the other’s mistakes.”
Yale will be Dartmouth’s first Ivy League competition of the season.
“We just need to play smart clean lacrosse,” Kessel said. “We definitely know that we can beat them.”
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