Sunday, May 28, 2017

Boston College Women's Lax Comes Up Just Shy in National Title Game

Norwell native and Noble & Greenough alum Kenzie Kent set a record for points in an NCAA tournament (37), and points in a single championship game (10), but it wasn't quite enough for the Eagles to top powerful Maryland.    Photo by John Quackenbos, via
By Michael Abelson (@ABELS0N)

FOXBORO - Boston College had the best player on the field, but the undefeated Maryland Terrapins were the best team in the country, and showed it when they needed to.

The Eagles fought tooth and nail with the No. 1 team in the land, but couldn’t turn the corner as the Terps held on for a 16-13 win, claiming the Division 1 Women’s Lacrosse championship at Gillette Stadium. The game was played in front of a record tournament crowd of 11,668.

“I'm really proud of my team,” BC coach Acacia Walker said. “I think to take down Maryland is like slaying a dragon, and I think my girls fought until the very end, which is all I can ask of them.”

Maryland scored the fastest goal in tournament history 10 seconds into the game and scored another a minute later. BC answered with a pair by Sam Apuzzo to tie it before the Terps opened up a 5-2 lead.

The Eagles would claw back to tie it 5-5 at the half, but never led.

Boston College did not go gently into that good night thanks to Kenzie Kent. A two-sport sophomore star, Kent was also a key part of BC’s Frozen Four women's hockey team this past winter. On the lacrosse pitch in Foxboro Sunday, Kent lit it up with five goals and five assists, as the Terrapins had no answer for her. Kent had four goals and four assists in the second half.

Kent, a Norwell native, was named the Most Outstanding Player of the tournament for her play, setting a women's NCAA tournament record with 37 points (21G, 16A). Her 10 points (5G, 5A) Sunday also tied a championship game record.

“Boston College is a different team with her than they are early in the season while she's still competing in hockey,” Maryland coach Cathy Reese said of Kent. “She's tough to defend. She's got great field vision. She's been a big part of where they were able to go this season.”

While Kent led the attack, the Eagles also got contributions throughout the offense. Sophomore attack Sam Apuzzo had four goals, and senior Kate Weeks had two goals and an assist.

Maryland opened up a 10-5 lead with five goals in the first five minutes of the second half. Caroline Steele had two of her game-high six goals during the outburst that gave Maryland enough of a cushion to whether BC’s comeback.

The Eagles battled back to make it 11-10, thanks to a Dempsey Arsenault goal with 14 minutes left, but the Terrapins scored the next two, and the Eagles were never able to get that gap closer than that the rest of the game.

“I think it gives negative mojo to your team if you think of how many goals you're down by,” Kent said. “Instead we take it, like I said earlier, play‐by‐play. I think that's what got us out of that hole.”


BC’s seniors will go down as the class that put the Eagles on the college lacrosse map. A combined record of 57-26, four NCAA tournament appearances, and a run to the title game are accolades all earned by the group.

“I can't really put words to how amazing an experience I've had these four years,” BC senior goalie, and Longmeadow native, Zoe Ochoa said. “It just goes to show how great our team is. We wouldn't be as amazing as we are without the leadership of our coaches. It's just been an amazing four years and I'll never forget the people, the coaches, and the games we've had. It was really amazing.”

While the class of 2017 brought the Eagles to prominence, the cupboard remains overflowing for the Eagles. Kent and Apuzzo return next year, as does Kaileen Hart, the team’s third-leading scorer this season.

Goalkeeper Lauren Daly and defenders Brooke Troy and Elizabeth Miller are all sophomores and have two more years up on The Heights.

“I'm confident that because of our seniors, these underclassmen have been led in a really, really good way,” Walker said. “So I do believe the culture has been strengthened by the leadership and by the families that support us. I'm looking forward to the future.”

No comments :