Banks' overtime goal gives women's lacrosse a chance to defend title

LEWISTON, Maine -- The defending New England Small College Athletic Conference champions will get the opportunity to defend their title.

Emma Banks scored on a terrific individual effort in overtime to lift Colby College to an 8-7 win over Bates College in NESCAC women's lacrosse on Wednesday. The Mules earned the seventh seed and will play at second-seeded Amherst College in a league quarterfinal game Saturday at noon. 
 
"Our team really played together and believed in themselves. We stayed in the moment and didn’t let the pressure get to us," Colby head coach Karen Henning said. "We picked each other up when it was tough and just kept battling. So many different people stepped up at different times and had an impact."
 
The Mules and Amherst played in the season opener at Colby, with the Mammoths pulling out a 13-12 victory.
 
Colby would not have made the playoffs if Bates had won the game. The Mules would have lost a tie-breaker with Bates and Hamilton College for the final two spots.
 
By the numbers
* Sasha Fritts had three goals, two caused turnovers, and two ground balls to lead the Mules (9-6 overall, 4-6 NESCAC).
 
* Banks added two goals, while the Mules received one goal apiece from Bridget Horwood, Grace Langmuir, and Kendall Smith.
 
* Colby had a 29-16 shot advantage and won the turnover battle by committing just 13 to the Bobcats' 25.
 
* Teal Otley had three goals and Liv Sandford scored twice for Bates (7-8, 2-8).
 
Game highlights
* Bates won the draw control to start overtime, but the Bobcats never got a shot off before turning the ball over.
 
* Banks received the ball behind the Bates goal, swept to her left around the goal, beat her defender, and ripped a low shot in to help the Mules advance to the playoffs.
 
* The two teams combined for seven goals over a span of 15:14, but each team only scored one goal in the final 13:12 of regulation. 
 
* Langmuir scored one of the nicest goals of the season to give the Mules a 7-6 lead with 5:54 remaining in regulation. She used her strength against a defender to get in front of the goal and then used a twisting backhand shot for the score.
 
* Bates scored with just seven seconds left on the shot clock and 43 seconds remaining in regulation to tie the contest at 7-7. Allison Dewey scored on a tough angle.
 
* The Mules led 4-1 at halftime, holding Bates to just five shots in the opening 30 minutes. Fritts scored the first two goals of the game and Smith made it 3-0 just 4:37 into the opening half.
 
* Otley scored off a free-position shot with 23:55 to go, but Colby answered back when Banks tallied with 19:46 remaining to the break. That score turned out to be the final of the half.
 
* Bates stunned the Mules with four straight goals in the opening 5:58 of the half to take a 5-4 lead. Horwood tied the game with 18:52 to go and Fritts put Colby up 6-5 with 15:20 to play.
 
* The Bobcats tied it at 6-6 on a score by Summer Dias with 13:12 remaining.
 
* Melinda Edie led Colby's defense with four ground balls and three caused turnovers. Kelsey Otley had three caused turnovers and two ground balls, while Maddie Hatch led the way with four draw controls. 
 
Box
 

2018 NESCAC Women’s Lacrosse Championship

Saturday, April 28 at Higher Seeds

Quarterfinal Games

No. 8 Hamilton at No. 1 Middlebury – 12 p.m.

No. 7 Colby at No. 2 Amherst – 12 p.m.

No. 6 Trinity at No. 3 Tufts – 12 p.m.

No. 5 Wesleyan at No. 4 Bowdoin – 12 p.m.

Saturday, May 5 at Highest Remaining Seed

Semifinal Games – 12 p.m./2:30 p.m.

Highest Remaining Seed vs. Lowest Remaining Seed

Remaining Quarterfinal Round Winners

Sunday, May 6 at Semifinal Site

Final – 1 p.m.

Semifinal Winners