The No. 10 Boston University women’s lacrosse team recorded a 14-13 double-overtime triumph against the College of William & Mary on Saturday in Williamsburg, Va. to open its season with back-to-back victories.
Junior Xan Weitzel scored the game winning goal 1:28 into double overtime after the Terriers (2-0) rallied back from a six-goal deficit. Weitzel ended the day with six points and senior co-captain Sarah Dalton scored a school-record eight goals in regulation. Junior Traci Landy and freshman Hannah Frey each added two goals.
William & Mary (2-2) scored three quick goals to start the game, and then traded goals with BU to go into the half with an 8-6 lead. But BU came alive in the second half to come back and score seven goals while holding the Tribe to just five in the second frame.
‘In the first half, defensively, we were real frantic,’ BU coach Liz Robertshaw said. ‘Going into the second half, our defense settled down and played rock-solid defense. I really credit them for turning it around. They made the adjustments needed to hold [William & Mary’s] scorers down.’
Robertshaw’s adjustments allowed the Terriers to keep themselves in the game after halftime, and BU came out and scored back-to-back goals to tie the game, 8-8. The Tribe went on to score five straight goals until Robertshaw called the girls in for a timeout.
‘We took a timeout and talked to the girls,’ Robertshaw said. ‘We identified what had to change, and then the captains took over. [Senior] Kelly Munroe and Sarah Dalton really pumped up the team. They got them talking. We called an attacking play that scored the first goal for us, and then we went down three or four minutes later and did the same thing. I think that really started to boost our confidence.’
Dalton’s performance not only helped the Terriers turn around offensively and score the last six goals of the game, but also helped hold the Tribe off the scoreboard for the last 30 minutes of the game. In addition to scoring four goals in the second half, Dalton had four draw controls and caused three turnovers.
‘She really was a spark in our defending game yesterday,’ Robertshaw said. ‘If she didn’t play the kind of game that she played, I think we would have been looking at a different outcome.’
The Terrier defense fended off two Tribe shots in the first overtime before BU converted its first shot on goal for the game winner in the second overtime.
Robertshaw said she warned the Terriers about William & Mary’s dangerous offense before the game. Coming into Saturday’s game, the Tribe had scored an average of 14.7 goals in its first three games this season.
‘We told [the team] that it was going to be a battle from the start with William & Mary,’ Robertshaw said. ‘They were going to come out hard against us. But we told them we were just going to have to play hard and play smart. No matter whether we were up or down, we had to play the style of lacrosse that we teach every day.’
But Robertshaw also said she never doubted the team’s ability to come back in the game, even when they were down by six goals because of last year’s America East championship game, when the Terriers played into overtime and beat the University of New Hampshire, 9-8.
Many of the returning players were on the field in that game, so they knew how to play an overtime game. But Robertshaw said she likes that the team has confidence in itself to pull together and battle back and eventually win in extra time.
‘This speaks volumes of the character of the team,’ Robertshaw said. ‘They felt the confidence. They looked at each other and trusted that they could get it done. Only two games into the season, having a team that can look to every other person on that field and have the confidence that we’re going to win that game, that’s huge.’