Courtesy of Yale Athletics
After Cornell overcame a halftime deficit to emerge victorious at Reese Stadium on Saturday, the Yale women’s lacrosse team nearly pulled off a similar feat against No. 18 Boston College on Wednesday. However, an 8–1 scoring run by the Eagles in the second half scuppered any hopes of a Bulldog victory.
The offensive flurry by Boston College (9–4, 1–3 ACC) propelled the home squad to victory over Yale (5–5, 1–2 Ivy) in a game reminiscent of prior defensive breakdowns against No. 6 Stony Brook and No. 7 Cornell. Although the Elis trailed by four goals at the half, they managed to cut the Eagles’ lead to one in the second frame before falling by a score of 19–12.
Going into the contest, Boston College had won five of its past seven games, with its only blemishes coming against No. 1 Maryland and No. 2 North Carolina. Still, the Bulldogs managed to stymie the Eagles’ offensive efforts in the game’s opening sequences and held a one-goal advantage nine minutes into the first half courtesy of a strike by attacker Hope Hanley ’17.
But after some early setbacks, one of the nation’s best scoring offenses wasted little time reclaiming the lead by tallying seven goals over a span of 4:20 in the opening half. The team’s leading scorer and attacker Kate Weeks combined with attacker Kayla O’Connor to produce five of the scores in the offensive outburst and give Boston College a 7–1 lead.
Four more goals from the Elis in the first half, including two strikes by attacker Kiwi Comizio ’18 in the final five minutes, sent Yale to the break trailing 9–5.
The Bulldogs came out firing after the intermission, scoring four of the half’s first five tallies. A free position goal by attacker Tess McEvoy ’17 brought Yale within one.
Similar to 12–1 and 11–1 scoring runs produced by the Seawolves and Big Red, Boston College put together excellent performances on both ends of field, scoring eight of the game’s next nine goals. Dominating performances in the faceoff circle plagued the Bulldogs all afternoon, as the Eagles controlled 23 of the game’s 33 draws, a major source of their offensive success.
“Slowing the ball in transition and winning the 50/50 balls are two things that are [our] goals for every game,” midfielder Taryn Gallagher ’18 said. “If we can reduce the number of the transition goals against us and increase the hustle plays, I think we will have two really strong performances this weekend.”
Despite three additional goals, the scoring streak by the Eagles proved too much for Yale to overcome as the Elis ultimately fell by seven goals in Chestnut Hill. The victory was Boston College’s second in as many years after it triumphed over the Bulldogs 15–11 last season in New Haven.
Up next for the Bulldogs is Sacred Heart, which comes to Reese Stadium on Saturday riding a five-game losing streak. The Pioneers have scored just nine goals in their last two games and are averaging 8.86 goals per game this season, one of the worst rates in the NCAA. Yale, meanwhile, has scored at least 10 goals in all but one of its games thus far and will look to boost its offensive numbers against one of the more porous teams in the league.
The Elis will then face Stanford later in the day in a far more challenging matchup. The Cardinal, in stark contrast to Sacred Heart, comes to New Haven on Saturday having won six consecutive games, outscoring its opponents 102–60 in that span.
Both teams enter the matchup with several players on the roster with over 20 goals in the season. For the Bulldogs, McEvoy, who scored thrice against BU, leads the team with 29 tallies, followed by Izzy Nixon ’19 with 22 and Hanley, who also found the back of the net against the Terriers, with 20. For Stanford, meanwhile, Kelsey Murray and Elizabeth Cusick have 24 and 23 goals, respectively, though both have played in one fewer game.
“This weekend is definitely going to be a challenge, but the team is really excited to take these two solid teams on, especially Stanford,” goalie Sydney Marks ’17 said. “It’s important to acknowledge that we played very hard against BC, and I think that if we come out with the same intensity that we had for most of that game, the team will be very successful on Saturday.”
The Bulldogs play Sacred Heart at 12:00 p.m. before facing off against Stanford at 6 p.m.