LEWISTON, Maine -- The Bates College field hockey team suffered its first loss of the season against their in-state rival Bowdoin Polar Bears, 5-0, on Wednesday night at Campus Avenue Field. The Bobcats played well, but the Polar Bears showed why they are ranked third nationally and remain undefeated on the season.
Bowdoin (5-0, 2-0 NESCAC) has yet to allow a goal this season. Bates drops to 3-1 overall and 1-1 in the NESCAC.
Bates came out hard in the first half, working its way into Bowdoin’s half off of the initial pass back, but they spent much of the remainder of the first half in their defensive end. The entire defense worked hard defending Bowdoin’s 22 first half shots, with Bates first-year goaltender Katie McEnroe (Hockessin, Del.) making six saves in the half.
McEnroe made 11 saves in total, while her Bowdoin counterpart, junior Emileigh Mercer (Newton, Mass.), needed only one save to earn the shutout.
However, Bowdoin managed to capitalize on their quick ball movement and constant pressure by scoring three first-half goals. Thirteen minutes into the game, Bowdoin senior forward Hillary Hoffman (Greenwood Village, Colo.) scored her first of two goals on the day off an assist from sophomore midfielder Shavonne Lord (Shrewsbury, Mass.) Hoffman and Lord struck again nine minutes later, only Lord recorded the goal this time off an assist from Hoffman.
With three minutes to go in the half, Bowdoin pulled away with their third goal of the game off of a penalty corner when first-year forward Ingrid Oelschlager (Roanoke, Va.) scored off an assist from junior forward Lindsey McNamara (Milton, Mass.) and junior midfielder Julia King (Yarmouth, Maine).
Bates picked up the offensive pressure in the second half, generating more attack in Bowdoin’s defensive end. However, the Bobcats had difficulty getting shots on goal, managing three in the entire game, all of which came late in the second half. Despite the increased offensive pressure, Bowdoin would score six minute into the half, with Hoffman tallying her second goal of the game off an assist from sophomore defender Ashley Peterson (Littleton, Colo.).
Bates continued to play hard throughout and almost broke Bowdoin’s scoreless streak with eleven minutes remaining in the game, when sophomore defender Samantha Rothkopf (Chicago, Ill.) rocketed a shot from the top of the circle into the back of the net. However, the goal was taken back because the referees ruled that Rothkopf released the shot just outside of the circle.
Bates looks to get back on track in back to back NESCAC games this weekend. The Bobcats play at Connecticut College on Saturday at 11 a.m., and then play host to Trinity College Sunday at 12 p.m. Bowdoin plays at Williams on Saturday at 11 a.m.