MIDDLEBURY, Vt. -- You can call the Colby College women's lacrosse team New England Small College Athletic Conference champions.
"The whole game I never felt worried," said Colby tri-captain Emilie Klein, who had four goals. "The entire team plays with such composure. We really focus on ourselves and we don't worry too much about who we are playing. I think that helped us in this game.
The Mules won back-to-back NESCAC titles in 2008 and 2009 under head coach Karen Henning. Colby evens its record in league championship games to 3-3. The Mules fell in 2007 under former head coach Heidi Godomsky. Henning went to four straight title contests from 2008 to 2011, losing in 2010 and 2011. The loss in 2011 was a 7-1 setback to Trinity.
Trinity had an impressive individual display by junior attacker Kiley Coffey, who tied a NESCAC playoff record with seven goals. Coffey is now tied with Colby graduate Amy Campbell '10, who had seven goals in a quarterfinal game in 2009. Campbell also held the tourney record of 13 goals, but Coffey surpassed that mark with 17 goals in three playoff games.
"Having more than one person who can take the draw has been big for us the last two games," said Colby tri-captain Georgia Lubrano. "They talk to each other and figure out who might have the best chance to win a draw. We also have girls around the circle who hustle and put everything on the line to get that ball.
"Gemma has been playing like this all year long," Henning said. "She doesn't get all the publicity, but everyone on this team knows how important she is to us."
The next draw control was won by Kendall Smith and she turned it into the game-winning goal only 38 seconds after Fritts' goal. Smith, who had three goals and one assist, tallied off a free-position shot with 13:15 remaining.
Klein won the next draw control, but the draw did not lead to a Colby goal. Trinity had a chance to cut the margin to one goal, but Klein forced a turnover with 11:47 to play. Klein, the NESCAC Defensive Player of the Year, then scored off an assist from Fritts with 10:45 remaining for a 12-9 lead.
The Mules decided to spread out the field and did an excellent job killing valuable minutes off the clock. Hatch closed out the scoring with a low shot off a feed from Fritts with 6:01 left.
The Mules got off to a solid start for the second day in a row. Colby led 2-1 and 3-2 before Trinity scored two straight goals for a 4-3 lead with 6:34 remaining to intermission. Klein scored off a free-position shot with 2:27 to go, but Coffey scored unassisted on a power move to the goal with 22 seconds to play for a 5-4 Bantam lead at the break.
Izzy Scribano had four saves to earn the win in goal. Zoe Ferguson, an All-NESCAC First Team pick, also made four saves.
"We read Jamie's entire letter to the team," Henning said. "She wrote a lot about trusting each other and trusting our preparation that got us to this point. She also talked about how the entire CWL family was rooting for us and watching the webcast from all over the country."
2017 NESCAC Women’s Lacrosse Championship
Saturday, April 29 at Higher Seeds
Colby 8, Wesleyan 7, OT
Trinity 19, Tufts 10
Hamilton 12, Bowdoin 9
Middlebury 8, Amherst 7
Saturday, May 6 at Middlebury
Colby 10, Middlebury 9
Trinity 12, Hamilton 3
Sunday, May 7 at Middlebury
Colby 13, Trinity 9