Entering Saturday afternoon undefeated at home and riding a three-game win streak, the Yale women’s lacrosse team could not extend either mark.
The Bulldogs (5–5, 2–1 Ivy) fell 13–7 to Albany (5–3, 1–0 America East) despite a four-goal and two-assist performance from attacker Tess McEvoy ’17. The Great Danes captured an early three-goal lead in the first half, and held Yale at arm’s length the rest of the way en route to dealing the Elis their first loss since March 8.
“Albany is a great team,” said head coach Erica LaGrow, whose team is now 4–1 at home. “They executed well and took us out of our game plan. I don’t feel it was our best performance but playing strong nonconference teams will prepare us for our Ivy opponents.”
Off an assist from McEvoy, Yale attacker Amanda Bosland ’19 was the first to register a tally on the scoreboard. But the brief lead turned out to be Yale’s only advantage of the chilly New Haven afternoon. Three minutes and one second later, Albany knotted the game at one.
Over the ensuing six minutes, the Great Danes built an early cushion, scoring three more goals — one of which came from the stick of Dakotah Savitcheff, the nation’s fifth leading goal scorer — to build an early cushion. Savitcheff scored two more goals thereafter to lead her team.
Bulldog attacker Addie Zinsner ’19 shrunk the lead to two on an unassisted effort, but that differential would be as close to equalizing the score as Yale would get for the rest of the game.
McEvoy tried valiantly to keep her team in the game, scoring or assisting on six of the Bulldogs’ seven goals. But her effort, including taking six of Yale’s 15 shots on goal, was not enough to overcome the proficiency of Albany’s attack.
“I’ve been so impressed with Tess’s play this season,” defender and captain Kate Walker ’16 said. “She’s been really, really stepping up in all of our games, taking control of the offense and playing with a lot of poise. When the ball is in her stick and she’s driving to the cage, she is truly an unstoppable force. Our game against Albany was a prime example of that.”
Albany notched two more goals immediately following Zinsner’s goal to double the lead, putting Yale behind by four with less than eight minutes remaining in the first half.
Yale, whose 2–1 Ivy record currently places it in a tie with Harvard for third in the conference, then ushered in a two-goal run of its own — including a goal and an assist from McEvoy — before the Great Danes answered with back-to-back goals yet again to carry an 8–4 lead into the locker room.
McEvoy opened the second half with a free-position score less than two minutes into the period, before Albany unleashed its fourth multigoal spurt, in a set of two again, to extend the lead to 10–5. The two teams traded goals until the score was 11–7 with just over five minutes remaining in the contest.
Yale managed one more shot attempt over the next three-plus minutes before Albany closed the door once and for all with one last two-goal burst over the final minute and a half.
The peripheral statistics paint a similar story to the final 13–7 scoreline. The Great Danes sent 22 shots to the Elis’ 16, in addition to earning two more draw controls, committing two fewer turnovers and saving three more shots.
Yale goalie Sydney Marks ’18, coming off of her best performance as a Bulldog, a 15-save outing in Yale’s 10–9 victory over Columbia last week, made five saves in the defeat.
“The hustle was certainly there for most of the game, but I just don’t think we played like we wanted to win if that makes sense,” Marks said. “Of course we want to win, that’s a given in sports, but that internal drive was lacking just a tad … I feel like we just weren’t able to make the adjustments we needed to make when things started going south.”
The Elis play again on short rest this Wednesday, at home, against Boston College at 4 p.m.