The Boston University women’s lacrosse team split its two games over spring break, earning its first victory of the season over American University and falling to No. 14 Johns Hopkins University.
The Terriers (1-5, 1-0 Patriot League) began their 2014 campaign on a four-game losing streak, including two losses against top-five opponents. In its last game before the mid-semester break, BU lost 9-7 to Dartmouth College in a tight defensive matchup.
Like the Terriers, American (2-6, 0-2 Patriot League) came into Saturday’s game struggling against non-conference opponents. The Eagles had lost four out of their first five matchups against unranked out-of-conference opponents.
Looking to avenge its recent scoring drought, BU emerged with a previously unseen offensive intensity, scoring nine first-half goals against American. The Terriers scored six unanswered during an eight-minute span in the middle of the first frame, capped off by a goal from senior midfielder Sydney Godett that was assisted by freshman attack Taylor Hardison. With this final goal of the half in hand, BU took a 9-4 lead into the halftime break.
“We started off the half strong and got some nice offensive looks,” said BU coach Liz Robertshaw. “We really executed our game plan well in the first half.”
The Eagles made a strong push coming out of halftime, scoring the first three goals of the second half to cut the deficit to just two. American tied the game up at 10 apiece with 14:52 remaining, but Robertshaw’s team remained calm.
“[American] came back with a little run against us,” Robertshaw said. “But we did a good job of stopping them, which was good to see.
Junior attack Kelsey Marafioti and her classmate attack Jenna Boarman scored consecutive goals to regain BU’s two-goal advantage with less than eight minutes to play. Freshman goalkeeper Caroline Meegan held fast down the stretch, and the Terriers squeaked out the 12-11 conference victory.
Following their success in Washington D.C., the Terriers traveled to Baltimore, to face the Blue Jays (9-0).
Johns Hopkins is a perennial lacrosse power and has continued to flex its muscle this year, having outscored opponents by an average score of 14-5 en route to an undefeated record to start the season.
The Terriers sustained their high level of all-around play, not allowing the Blue Jays to break away in the first half of play. The Blue Jays maintained a slim 4-3 advantage until the three minute mark in the half, when senior attack Elizabeth Morse netted her fifth goal of the season to tie the game going into halftime.
Once again, as the second half commenced, BU kept up its strong play and gave Johns Hopkins all they could handle. Following a goal from senior midfielder Becca Church with 20:43 remaining, the teams were knotted at 6-6.
“I thought this was a great defensive effort,” Robertshaw said. “We really took away their leading scorers, which was a real point of emphasis for us coming into the game.”
The Terriers could not withstand the Blue Jays’ potent offensive attack forever, however, and eventually succumbed to the Blue Jays as Johns Hopkins went on to score four unanswered goals.
“I was really pleased with the way we played overall this past week,” Robertshaw said. “There were just little moments that caught up with us. But against good teams like Hopkins, those kinds of mistakes are bound to happen.
“I’m happy with our team, but I think we need to do more to win games like these.”
After playing their first six regular season games on the road, the Terriers will return to Nickerson Field for the first time in 2014 when BU takes Patriot League foe College of the Holy Cross this Wednesday at 6 p.m.