WATERVILLE, Maine --- The seventh-seeded Hamilton College women's lacrosse team ended two Colby College streaks on Saturday in a 9-4 win over the Mules in a New England Small College Athletic Conference quarterfinal game at Bill Alfond Field.
Colby's run of five straight NESCAC championship game appearances is over and the Mules' 15-game unbeaten streak at home came to an end.
Hamilton (7-9 overall) moves on to the NESCAC Final Four and a meeting with top-seeded Trinity at noon in a semifinal game in Hartford next Saturday. Third-seeded Middlebury and fourth-seeded Amherst play in the other semifinal at 2:30 p.m.
The second-seeded and sixth-ranked Mules are 13-2 overall and will now have a lengthy wait to see if they make the NCAA Division III Tournament.
The Continentals, who played women's lacrosse in the Liberty League up until this year, came up with a big win in their first NESCAC playoff game. After falling behind 2-1, Hamilton scored the final three goals of the first half to take a 4-2 margin into intermission.
The Mules cut the lead to 4-3 when Katie Griffin (Duxbury, Mass.) tallied 3:32 into the second half off a pass from Claire Donegan (Great Falls, Va.). The Continentals, though, answered back with an unassisted goal by Rachel Friedman (Fairfield, Conn.) just 54 seconds after Griffin's goal and then another unassisted score by Katie D'Antonio (Garden City, N.Y.) with 23:13 to play.
Colby's Sarah Lux (Manlius, N.Y.) scored off a pass from Griffin with 18:41 remaining to make it a 6-4 game. The Mules would not get another goal after that score.
Hamilton goaltenders Sarah Caswell and Kari Koga combined to make nine saves, with Koga stopping six in the second half. Hamilton's defense made it tough for Colby to get quality shots off in the second half. Meanwhile, the Continentals added goals from Madison Beres (Chestertown, Md.) off a pass from Libby Schultz (Saratoga Springs, N.Y.) with 14:12 to play, Schultz from D'Antonio with 11:05 left, and a third unassisted goal by Friedmann with 8:08 to play.
D'Antonio finished with two goals and one assist, Beres added two goals, and Emily Brodsky (Bryn Mawr, Pa.) also tallied for Hamilton.
Lux led the Mules with a pair of goals and Donegan had two assists. Lindsey McKenna (Fairfield, Conn.) also tallied for Colby.
Hamilton senior defender Meg Pengue (Fairfield, Conn.) had four caused turnovers, while junior defender Paige Engeldrum (West Islip, N.Y.) had four ground balls. Julia Beaty (Cambridge, Mass.) finished with three ground balls, while Beres had two ground balls and one caused turnover.
Colby goaltender Michelle Burt (Woodbridge, Conn.) had nine saves, two caused turnovers, and two ground balls. Donegan and Kirsten Karis (Southborough, Mass.) each had three ground balls.
The Continentals had a 10-5 edge in draw controls, with Josie Jones (St. Louis, Mo.) and Lauren Sokol (Colts Neck, N.J.) each winning three. Donegan and Kate Pistel (Amherst, Mass.) both had two draw controls for Colby.
Hamilton 9, Colby 4
Hamilton College.... 4 5 - 9
Colby............... 2 2 - 4
Hamilton College SCORING: GOALS: Rachel Friedman 3; Katie D'Antonio 2;
Madison Beres 2; Libby Schultz 1; Emily Brodsky 1.
ASSISTS: Katie D'Antonio 1; Libby Schultz 1.
Colby SCORING: GOALS: Sarah Lux 2; Katie Griffin 1; Lindsey McKenna 1.
ASSISTS: Claire Donegan 2; Katie Griffin 1.
SHOTS - Hamilton College 25; Colby 22.
TURNOVERS - Hamilton College 16; Colby 16.
CLEARS - Hamilton College 16-16; Colby 17-17.
GOALIES - Hamilton: Dewi Caswell (30:00 minutes, 3 saves, 2 GA) and Kari Koga (30:00, 6 saves, 2 GA);
Colby: Michelle Burt (60:00, 18-9, 9).