WILLIAMSTOWN,MA- The Williams College Ephs (0-1, 0-1 NESCAC) took their first loss of the season from the Tufts Jumbos (1-0,1-0 NESCAC) in their home opener at Williamson Field.
The Ephs took on one of their biggest NESCAC rivals in their first game of the season, having lost to Tufts twice last season. The Jumbos eventually went on to the 2018 NCAA finals, falling to other NESCAC rival Middlebury College in the final game. This did not waver the Ephs though, as they came out to an explosive start, with first-year Emily Batcherlor taking possession and racing down the field, getting her first penalty corner within the first minute. Junior Simone Veale took the first shot of the season off the Batchelor penalty corner. The shot was saved by Jumbos keeper Andie Stallman, but the Ephs dominated possession throughout the first quarter, only allowing one shot from Jumbo Gillian Roeca (13:41).
The second quarter saw the Ephs effort increase as Tufts began to battle back against their offensive pushes. Veale took another early shot at 15:46 but was once again stopped by the pad of Stallman. The Ephs managed three penalty corners in the quarter, but could not find the back of the net.
At the half, the Ephs had 4 shots on goal and the Jumbos had one shot on goal. Eph keeper Abby Lloyd had one save while Jumbo keeper Stallman had 2 saves.
Into the third quarter, the Jumbos tested the Eph defense, maintaining possession with three different Jumbos taking shots within the 42nd minute. Shots from Marguerite Salamone, Reegan McCluskey and Julia Todesco following consecutive penalty corners were all blocked by senior keeper Lloyd. The Jumbos offense also notched two green cards on Beth Krikorian (32:03) and Julia Todesco (35:46) in the quarter. The Ephs would kept up the strong defense throughout the quarter, with no shots by the Eph offense.
As the clock wound down in the 4th quarter, the intensity on the field only increased. Eph sophomore took the first shot of the half off a penalty corner at 46:30 but the shot was kicked out by the Jumbo keeper. The Ephs had two more shots by seniors Emma Ticknor and Isabel Perry but both shots were unable to break the Jumbo defense. After a quick turnaround of possession around the 50th minute, the Jumbos had a shot off a penalty corner, but Eph keeper Lloyed knocked the airborne ball down with her glove and allowed the Ephs to regain the ball.
The Ephs took this possession all the way down to the goal box, where first-year Addie Sidles took a pass from junior Claire Fitzpatrick straight to the back of the net, notching her first collegiate goal and a 1-0 lead for the Ephs (53:41). The Jumbos answered back quickly with Krikorian taking a shot. Lloyd managed to knock the shot away but the Eph defenders could not keep Salamone from taking another shot that hit the top corner of the goal, equalizing the score at 1-1. With 5 minutes of play left, the Ephs battled to regain possession of the ball. Krikorian took the ball past the Eph defense and into the net at 56:37, giving the Jumbos the lead.
The Ephs took the ball down in the final minutes of the game and Welch took a hard shot at 57:27 that was pushed out by Jumbo defenders.
"We played with such hustle and intensity. It's frustrating giving up a goal 30 seconds after taking the lead after hammering down on them and keeping possession for most of the game. We dominated and kept them on their toes, but they are a strong team given their the reigning No. 2 team in the country. But we have a lot to build on and we had great moments throughout." -Coach Barrale
The Ephs next game will be a NESCAC matchup will be Saturday, September 14th at Wesleyan. The game will start at 12pm EST.