The women’s lacrosse team, who played their last game on April 27, can certainly look back on their season with pride. The Yeowomen battled through many unforeseen trials and misfortunes, but were able to finish their season with a 4–11 record. The team started their season in January with snow on the ground, beginning practices before Winter Term was over; the ladies then embarked on a spring break trip to Los Angeles, where they played against some very challenging teams. Shortly after, they lost their head coach.
The Yeowomen had 40 days of practice before they hit the field for a game. Winter practices are always difficult, with multiple teams sharing the only indoor facility, Williams Field House. Practice times range from 6 a.m. one week to 9:30 p.m. the next.
“Preseason is hard; it really tests your mental fitness with waking up so early and doing so much fitness. I think the spring athletes really bond over how difficult it is,” said sophomore Kate Hanick.
Throughout the month of February the Yeowomen trained and built up basic skills together to take on their opponents. The Yeowomen started off their season with a win against the University of Mount Union and continued to learn and grow as the season went on, despite playing teams ranked much higher than them before going into Conference play.
“We played more teams that were higher ranked than us, which meant we lost more games, but it also meant that we were more prepared for Conference,” said senior captain Madeleine O’Meara, who worked hard to keep the team together during tough times.
After their adventure to Los Angeles the Yeowomen hit a bump in the road. With their head coach put on probation, the ladies had to finish the season without their leader. But assistant Coach Colleen Ventura stepped up to the plate, and the team pulled off some incredible wins to finish the season with an impressive conference record. The Yeowomen won three of their six North Coast Athletic Conference games, more than any other year since the late 1990s.
One of the standout games of the year was the Yeowomen’s win against Ohio Wesleyan University. The entire game was a battle, with the lead switching back and forth constantly. After going into overtime, the Yeowomen pulled out an exciting win over OWU for the first time in 13 years. Despite the unfortunate drama at the end of the year, The team was in the running for moving on into the conference tournament until their last game against The College of Wooster
“I wasn’t expecting the amount of support I got through my teammates,” said first-year Grace Barlow. Through the practices at the beginning of the year, the academic strain, and loss of a head coach, Barlow always knew that she had a support system in her 17 teammates. She looks back at the season and regrets nothing that happened. She knows that the bond she made with her team throughout this semester is more important than any win.
“I don’t think I can adequately measure all the positive ways playing lacrosse has shaped my Oberlin experience. I’m so grateful to have had this experience,” added O’Meara.
The Yeowomen most definitely showed their strength and proved that they are a team to contend with. The team has some incredible seasons in front of them and it will be exciting to watch them in the coming years.