Women's lacrosse 2013 NESCAC Championship preview

Hamilton College travels to Trinity College's Robin L. Sheppard Field for a matchup with Trinity in a 2013 NESCAC Championship semifinal on Saturday, May 4.

The start time is set for noon in Hartford, Conn. Click here for a live video stream and here for live statistics. The second semifinal between Middlebury College and Colby College will follow at 2:30. The semifinal winners meet in the conference final at Trinity on Sunday, May 5, at noon. The NESCAC champion receives an automatic bid to the 2013 NCAA Division III Championship.

Nationally ranked No. 17 Hamilton (9-7 overall) is the No. 6 seed for the championship, and tied for sixth place in the conference standings with a record of 4-6. The Continentals upset third-seeded Bowdoin College 10-9 in the quarterfinals at Bowdoin on April 27. Hamilton is in the semifinals for the second time in its second year in the NESCAC. The Continentals lost to Trinity in overtime in last year's semifinals at Trinity. Hamilton is 3-5 this year against ranked opponents and will be playing its fourth straight game against a ranked team. Katie D'Antonio '14 is ranked fourth in the NESCAC with 47 points and Rachel Friedman '13 is fifth with 46.

No. 1 Trinity (15-0) is the top seed for the championship, and finished first in the conference standings with a record of 10-0. The Bantams defeated Tufts University 12-8 in the quarters on April 27. Trinity has won 23 straight games, including an 8-4 victory at Hamilton on April 20, and is the defending NCAA Division III champion. The Bantams are aiming for their third straight NESCAC title and they are the No. 1 seed for the fourth year in a row. Trinity lost in the conference championship game in 2008. The Bantams lead the NESCAC with a 5.20 goals against average, and Olivia Whitney is ranked fourth with a .506 save percentage.

No. 3 Middlebury (14-1) is the No. 2 seed for the championship, and finished second in the conference standings with a record of 9-1. The Panthers breezed to a 16-7 win against Bates College in the quarters on April 27. Middlebury has won four straight games and its lone setback this year was by a 10-9 score at Trinity on April 13. The Panthers boast seven NESCAC titles but haven't won the whole thing since 2007. Middlebury lost to Trinity by one goal in last year's conference championship game. The Panthers lead the NESCAC with 15.07 goals per game and 214 draw controls. Ellen Halle tops the conference with 47 goals and 29 assists.

No. 7 Colby (12-3) is the No. 4 seed for the championship, and finished fourth in the conference standings with a record of 7-3. The Mules cruised to an 11-3 win against Amherst College in the quarters on April 27. Colby won its first eight games this year but the Mules went 4-3 in their last seven, including a 14-6 loss to Middlebury on April 20. Colby played in the conference championship game every year from 2007 to 2011, and captured titles in 2008 and 2009. Lindsey McKenna is third in the NESCAC with 40 goals, Katharine Eddy is second with 27 assists and Michelle Burt is second with a .548 save percentage.

Team capsules are listed below.

Overall record: 9-7
Conference record (finish): 4-6 (T-6th place)
National ranking: No. 17
NCAA regional ranking: No. 6
Head coach: Patty Kloidt, 11th year, 147-50
NESCAC championship appearances: 2nd
NESCAC championship titles: None
NESCAC championship record: 2-1
Last win vs. Trinity: 2008, 13-9
Road/neutral record: 5-4
Goals per game: 10.12
Goals allowed per game: 9.69
Leading goal scorers: Katie D’Antonio ’14 (34), Rachel Friedman ‘13 (29), Margaret Gabriel ‘16 (17)
Assist leaders: Friedman (17), D’Antonio (13)
Starting goalie: Dewi Caswell ‘14 (8.79 gaa, .488 save pct., 6-2)

Overall record: 15-0
Conference record (finish): 10-0 (1st place)
National ranking: No. 1
NCAA regional ranking: No. 1
Head coach: Kathryn Livesay, 7th year, 102-22
NESCAC championship appearances: 9th
NESCAC championship titles: Two (2011, 2012)
NESCAC championship record: 10-6
Last win vs. Hamilton: 2013, 8-4 (April 20 at Hamilton)
Home record: 7-0
Goals per game: 13.20
Goals allowed per game: 5.20
Leading goal scorers: Megan Leonhard ’13 (31), Kaitlin Hildebrand ‘13 (30), Hadley Duncan ’13 (29)
Assist leaders: Hildebrand (16), Kathleen Timmons ’14 (12), Caroline Hayes ’15 (11)
Starting goalie: Olivia Whitney ’13 (5.15 gaa, .506 save pct., 7-0)

Overall record: 14-1
Conference record (finish): 9-1 (2nd place)
National ranking: No. 3
NCAA regional ranking: No. 2
Head coach: Missy Foote, 32nd year, 390-102-1
NESCAC championship appearances: 13th
NESCAC championship titles: Seven (2001-2007)
NESCAC championship record: 18-5
Last win vs. Colby: 2013, 14-6 (April 20 at Colby)
Road/neutral record: 7-1
Goals per game: 15.07
Goals allowed per game: 6.73
Leading goal scorers: Ellen Halle ’13 (47), Margaret Souther ’13 (31), Emma Kramer ’13 (28)
Assist leaders: Halle (29), Souther (18), Alice Pfeifer (14)
Starting goalie: Alyssa Palomba ‘14 (6.49 gaa, .441 save pct., 14-1)

Overall record: 12-3
Conference record (finish): 7-3 (4th place)
National ranking: No. 7
NCAA regional ranking: No. 4
Head coach: Karen MacCrate-Henning, 6th year, 86-24
NESCAC championship appearances: 13th
NESCAC championship titles: Two (2008, 2009)
NESCAC championship record: 16-10
Last win vs. Middlebury: 2012, 8-6
Road/neutral record: 6-1
Goals per game: 12.20
Goals allowed per game: 6.60
Leading goal scorers: Lindsey McKenna ’14 (40), Kate Pistel ’13 (21), Katharine Eddy ’14 (19)
Assist leaders: Eddy (27), Sarah Lux ’14 (11)
Starting goalie: Michelle Burt ’14 (7.14 gaa, .548 save pct., 9-2)

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