FINAL STRETCH — The Cats look to place second overall in the GLIAC before heading into playoffs.
FINAL STRETCH — The ‘Cats look to place second overall in the GLIAC before heading into playoffs.
Caden Sierra

WLAX hits the road to finish out impressive regular season run

This past weekend, the Northern Michigan women’s lacrosse team traveled downstate to play GLIAC rivals Grand Valley State University and Davenport University. The ‘Cats finished the weekend 1-1 with a 12-7 win over the Panthers on Friday night and a 13-2 loss to the Lakers on Sunday. 

In the Friday game, senior Minnie Bittell started the scoring nearly five minutes into the game, scoring her 60th goal of the season. As the half continued, the ‘Cats kept the pace with two goals from freshman Josie Lakosky and goals from Bittel, senior Kaitlyn Bridger and freshman Abby Sisson. Lakosky opened up the second half, completing her hat trick to keep the momentum strong. The Wildcats began to rotate in a variety of players, pressuring the Panthers. Junior Camryn Mayer and sophomore Dani Key both scored to close out the game 12-7 overall.

Caden Sierra

“I thought that they showed up ready and did everything that I asked them to do,” said Head Coach Lindsey Majkrzak. “We started out a little slow on offense. Davenport had a really good game plan for us. They did some things that were a little odd, they had a random field player play a goalie in the first half … and that just kind of shook us.”

On Sunday against the Lakers, the first seven minutes remained a 1-1 game with the first NMU goal coming from Bittell. Grand Valley held the Wildcats to just a single goal through the entire first half while scoring five more of their own. The ‘Cats were not able to bury another goal in the net until the beginning of the second half. Bridger claimed a goal in a successful free-position attempt. The Lakers scored seven goals unanswered by the Wildcats to end the game 13-2 in favor of GVSU. 

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The ‘Cats look ahead to play the Concordia University-St. Paul Bears on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m. for their final regular-season game of the year. The Bears are currently 1-4 in the GLIAC and 6-10 on the season. This the second match up between the ‘Cats and the Bears this season, with NMU defeating CSP 21-12 just two weeks prior. 

“It’s always fun to go to Concordia-St. Paul. I’d say 85 to 90% of our team is from Minnesota so we get a huge crowd whenever we go to Concordia,” Majkrzak said. “I do think that can definitely be a struggle especially for a freshman … so just how they’re going to be able to handle that crowd environment that they haven’t had to see before is going to be fun.” 

Bittell has had an impressive season for the lacrosse program. Bittell is just two points away from 300 career points as a Wildcat and just five points away from 100 points on the season. She has been honored with the GLIAC Offensive Player of the Week three times throughout the season. Sophomore Laine Stanton and Lakosky both hit career in-game highs in goals with seven goals from Stanton and six from Lakosky. Another notable player, Bridger has 110 career draw controls and 60 in the 2024 season alone. 

After this weekend away, the ‘Cats will begin the GLIAC playoffs starting on May 3.

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