Women’s lacrosse team falters in the dome

Women’s lacrosse team falters in the dome

Nate Bellville

While most students were home or away on vacation during Spring Break, the Northern Michigan University Women’s Lacrosse team wrapped up their first homestand at the Superior Dome.

The program has come from being a club sport years before sophomore defenseman Tori Aidif being one of those ladies who pushed for the team to be a varsity sport. Aidif was happy that the team transitioned from being a club sport to a varsity team.

“It was very fun being in a club, but the transition to varsity [sport] has been super great,” Aidif said. “We had to work a lot harder, a lot more structure but it’s a lot of fun.”

Head coach Emilia Ward was pleased with her first weeks of coaching the team.

“It’s going great so far,” Ward said. “I think we are on pace to be the [team]  we set out early in the season.”

However, the Wildcats wound up losing to both the Aquinas College Saints 20-12, and to the Concordia University-St. Paul University Golden Bears 14-8.

During the Saturday, March 4th game against the Saints, the Wildcats had a 3-2 lead after senior Blair Osgood netted two goals in a span of less than a minute. Through the rest of the first half, both teams would swap leads until the Saints took a 13-9 advantage into halftime.

In the second half, Aquinas had momentum carrying with them through the rest of the game. NMU scored three of four final goals from freshman Jordan Hanner, sophomore Shelby Klotz, and senior Savannah Stich in the final minutes, but couldn’t pull a comeback en route to the program’s first loss.

Klotz led the Wildcats with five goals on all five of her shots on goal, while junior goalkeeper Brianna Bangle made seven saves.

During the Tuesday, March 7th game against the Golden Bears, Hanner opened the scoring at 31 seconds into the game on a free-position shot past the Golden Bears goalkeeper Katie Lottsfeldt. Concordia came back, scoring five unanswered goals. Hanner snapped NMU’s scoring drought as she scored the next two goals to make it a 5-3 game. However, the Golden Bears took a 7-3 lead into the half.

When Concordia-St. Paul came out and scored four of the second half’s first five goals, giving them a 11-4 lead, the Wildcats rallied back.

Hanner netted goals to put NMU within four points. However, Golden Bears’ Kallie LaValle’s goal helped Concordia-St. Paul up by six. The Golden Bears would close the game out with Sheila Osbourne’s two goals in the final three minutes.

Hanner lead the scoring overall with six goals, while Bangle finished with 12 saves on the contest.

With a 1-2 start, Ward said the young team has plenty of room for improvement.

“I think we’re fully capable of competing with these teams for 60 minutes,” Ward said. “A lot of it is not about wins and losses, it’s showing improvement for us.”

Ward said that more consistency and development would improve the team going forward as well.

“Our goal is to continue to build ourselves going forward as we start conference play in April,” Ward said.

Redshirt-Freshman Graison Ringlever said they can improve on the next road trip.

“We’re definitely gonna see some good competition,” Ringlever said. “I think that if we have to improve in one area, it would definitely being set on offense.”

The Wildcats begin their road trip as they visit Georgian Court University in New Jersey on Friday and Shepherd University in West Virginia on Saturday.