Hoping to gain some much-needed experience, the Binghamton women’s lacrosse team faced off against two tough nonconference opponents to start its season. However, the Bearcats (0-2) dropped contests to both Lafayette and Syracuse this weekend.
The Bearcats came out firing against the Leopards on Thursday in their season opener. They scored two straight goals within 13 seconds of each other to open the game. Redshirt junior attack Brianne Arthur and junior attack Tiffany Ryan gave BU an early 2-0 lead. Ryan was key to the offense Thursday, collecting another goal to go along with two assists and two draw controls.
Despite trailing 4-2 with 21:28 remaining in the first, Lafayette (2-0) recorded five straight goals, two of which were scored by senior attacker Kirsten Wilhelmsen. Wilhelmsen, who finished the game with eight goals and an assist, ended any chance for a victory by the Bearcats, who eventually fell 17-14.
“I think Lafayette is a strong team and we certainly competed out there, but we were undisciplined in the little things,” said BU head coach Stephanie Allen. “With it being our opening game of the season, I think it was obvious that we hadn’t seen another opponent out there yet.”
Although BU was unable to handle Wilhelmsen’s offensive prowess, the play of sophomore midfielder Rebecca Golderman was a major bright spot for the Bearcats in both matches. Golderman found the net four different times, including cashing in on two free-position shots against the Leopards. She also contributed a ground ball and forced turnover.
“[Golderman] is just really poised under pressure,” Allen said. “She’s somebody that can get the ball into her hands and … she moves off-ball really well, and just generates solid drives for us, where teams are either having to slide to her or getting there late, and she’s picking them apart. Her ability to create out there, both off-ball and for herself, is something that is really a strong suit of hers.”
Unable to regroup and refocus after a close contest with Lafayette, BU suffered another deflating loss to the Orange (3-0), 16-5, at the Carrier Dome. From the opening draw, BU seemed completely outmatched. Syracuse grabbed an early 6-0 lead in the first period and finished the half ahead, 9-2.
Golderman continued her early success by corralling two goals, six draw controls, two ground balls and two caused turnovers against Syracuse. Senior midfielder Valerie DeNapoli added two goals of her own in addition to one draw control, one ground ball and one caused turnover.
Although BU was unable to come out on top in both meetings, its nonconference schedule was designed to test the capabilities of the Bearcats early.
“That’s why we have a conference schedule — to work out some of the inefficiencies in our team play that we have to fix moving forward,” Allen said.
The Bearcats are set to face Colgate on Wednesday. Opening draw is scheduled for 5 p.m. from Crown Field in Hamilton, New York.