Yeowomen Rebound Against OWU Bishops


Courtesy of Erik Andrews

Junior Bronwen Schumacher lines up for a free position shot during a game against Randolph College. The Yeowomen are 6–2 this season.

Tyler Sloan, Editor in Chief

Though they maintained a convincing lead for the majority of the game, the women’s lacrosse team ultimately fell just short of beating DePauw University in a 14–13 result on Saturday, April 5. The Tigers trailed the Yeowomen at the midway point but came out strong in the latter half of the game. The Tigers’ late surge put the team in a position to ultimately secure the win over Oberlin.

Early in the contest, the Yeowomen dominated and appeared as if they would walk away with their second North Coast Athletic Conference victory this season. Sophomore Suzanna Doak scored the first goal against the Tigers and would later add two more for a hat trick. Classmate Grace Barlow followed suit and effortlessly slipped ten goals past DePauw’s goalkeeper Liz Hawkins.

For Barlow, this was a career high and just one goal shy of tying the NCAC record for most goals in a sin gle game. In the 2013 season, Barlow finished second on the team with 28 goals. This year, with five games left, she has already broken a personal re cord with 31 goals. However, despite Barlow’s stellar performance and the team’s best efforts, Oberlin could not hold off DePauw for the final 30 minutes.

Barlow attributed the outcome of the weekend’s game to several factors.

“Right now, we’re doing a lot of shuffling of the lineup due to injuries on the team. Both offense and defense are assessing the holes and learning how to adjust,” she said. “Another difficulty in facing DePauw on Saturday was definitely our mental game. We weren’t quite fired up enough for this game and I think that translated to us not kicking it into gear on the field when we needed it.”

The Yeowomen roster has taken quite a hit recently in terms of injuries: junior co-captain Kate Hanick is suffering from a stress fracture on the third metatarsal in her right foot, first-year Michaela Puterbaugh has three stress fractures in each leg and classmate Sara Phister is struggling with shin splints and stress fractures. First-year goalkeeper Maya Elany broke her leg in the fall, leaving classmate Alexa L’Insalata as the sole goalkeeper for Oberlin.

L’Insalata has not faltered under the pressure of acting as the lone Yeowomen goalie. She has already tallied 62 saves this season and holds a solid .517 save percentage, good enough for first place in the NCAC. However, with key players battling through injuries in recent games, L’Insalata echoed Barlow’s concerns about the importance of remaining mentally tough.

“The biggest aspect of the game we need to improve on is not necessarily our offense or defense, but our mental game,” she said. “It is easy to let losses affect the rest of a season, and it does not help that we have a few crucial players injured at the moment. We need to stay positive, keep looking forward, not give up and show up hungry for a win each new game we face.”

The Yeowomen could not stress the importance of staying focused and upbeat enough.

“We’re a relatively mental team, as in we can sometimes get in our own heads and that often works against us,” Doak added.

Despite her team’s apprehensions about mental strength, Head Coach Lynda McCandlish remains confident that the talented group is more than capable of overcoming adversity in pursuit of a conference title. She expressed that the team is strong and will continue to practice and “get better everyday.”

The Yeowomen had the opportunity to prove exactly that on Wednesday, April 9 against the Ohio Wesleyan University Battling Bishops. In a 10–9 nailbiter, Oberlin managed to pull off its second NCAC victory on home turf. Doak and Barlow scored one and four goals, respectively. Senior Sarah Andrews tallied the opening score of the game, and first-years Han nah Heinke-Green and Phister each added two to finish the game.

With another conference win behind them, the Yeowomen are eager to continue the winning streak. Looking forward, the Yeowomen resume conference play on Tuesday, April 15, against Allegheny College on the Gators’ home field in Meadville, PA.

As for the rest of the season, Mc Candlish’s goals are simple and to the point.

“Stay positive, keep working hard, get the best out of practice everyday and make it to the NCAC tournament,” she said.