BY BRANDON WILFORE // April 6, 2017 //
In a home battle against a Commonwealth Coast Conference foe in the Western New England Golden Bears, the Curry Colonels women’s lacrosse team fell short by an 11-7 score.
Coming off a blowout win against Worcester State and a conference victory against CCC rival Nichols College, Curry was looking to keep the ball rolling against the visiting Golden Bears. But WNE had other plans.
After falling behind 3-0 early, the Colonels’ offense finally warmed up on a chilly spring evening and answered with two goals of their own by senior Kelly Parker who is now second in the conference in scoring.
But like they did all night, the Golden Bears wouldn’t allow Curry to gain any momentum, scoring the next four goals and taking all the wind out of the Colonels’ sails.
With 11:38 left in the first half Curry trailed 7-2 and was desperate for a goal to narrow the gap before the half, where they could work out the defensive kinks.
That came a few minutes later when WNE fouled and the possession was switched to the Colonels. After a successful clear, they worked the ball around and found senior Malorie Knowlton with seven minutes left in the first half.
After another Golden Bear foul, Knowlton was set up with a free position shot and capitalized to keep the momentum on Curry’s side by narrowing the deficit to only three with four minutes to play in the half.
After the teams traded shots and saves, the Colonels’ Head Coach Caitlin Roberts called a timeout to draw something up with two minutes until the half, hoping to inch closer to the lead.
However, it resulted in a turnover and Western New England’s Lindsey Phillips completed the first-half hat trick with nine seconds remaining.
At the intermission, Curry was trailing 8-4. The Colonels had more shots, fewer turnovers and more ground balls than the Golden Bears…the only thing they trailed in were balls that hit the back of the net.
The halftime adjustments seemed to work as Curry got two good looks, one hitting post, right out of the break.
That second look finally found the back of the net when; you guessed it, Parker scored with about 23 minutes left in the game to bring the Colonels to within three with a lot of time to work.
But Western New England’s Rachel Canning had other plans, netting a pair of goals four minutes in between. With 10-5 showing on the scoreboard, it seemed like Curry wouldn’t be able to take the lead from the Golden Bears who answered all of the Colonels’ goals with a few of their own.
A timeout by Curry after the goals was a clear indication the fans weren’t the only people feeling this slip away. The teams traded shots and saves for the next few minutes before WNE added more salt to the wound when Emily Dolan scored their 11th goal of the night.
Curry wouldn’t give up though, playing gritty defense and not letting the offense die down although trailing by six goals with 13 minutes to play.
The pressure finally paid off when senior Abby Carnevale scored, just a minute after a Colonel Timeout. This narrowed the Golden Bears lead to five with just about five minutes left, doable.
With the time winding down, and a win seeming less and less likely, Curry’s last hope came when senior Lauren Carroll made it a manageable four-goal deficit with around three minutes left.
The Colonels couldn’t get another shot off in the closing minutes and sent the 11-7 score final, falling to 5-7 on the season and 1-3 in the conference.
Seniority: All of Curry’s 7 goals Wednesday night came from seniors.
The games that matter: Four of the Colonels’ five remaining games this season are against CCC teams, with the next one scheduled for Saturday at noon with Wentworth coming to town.
Offensive minded: Curry’s Kelly Parker and Malorie Knowlton are now #2 and #3 in the Conference in goals, racking up 36 and 34 respectively.