This weekend the Columbia field hockey team, 8-4 (1-3 Ivy), broke one streak while continuing another streak, neither of which was their own.
The Lions traveled to Williamsburg, Va. to battle William & Mary, a team that had dropped its last five contests, and Davidson, a team on a three-game skid, on consecutive days. After a couple of laughers, the Light Blue survived the trip with a split.
At Friday's match against 14th-ranked William & Mary (8-5), the teams seemed to be grossly mismatched from the get go. This was the first meeting between the two teams, and the Lions were embarrassed at the hands of the Tribe 6-2.
The Tribe dominated the first half, out-shooting the Lions 13-3. They opened the scoring at 29:53 and continued to find the holes in sophomore goalie Molly Starsia-Lasagna, taking a 5-0 advantage into the half.
"I believe we let William & Mary come out too strong," sophomore midfielder Dana Zullo said. "We didn't set the tone of the game like we wanted to. We know they're a fast team and we got set back on our heels from the beginning."
The Lions hoped to stage their familiar second half heroics, but the uphill battle became steeper less than five minutes into the second period when William & Mary added a sixth goal for good measure.
It wasn't until the Lions were awarded a penalty corner that they got on the board at 24:41. Zullo and junior defender Tina Fernandez set up the play for junior midfielder Nikki Campbell to knock in the goal, making it 6-1.
Zullo followed with a goal of her own with 19:12 remaining in the game, but the comeback fell short as the Lions lost their second straight. They were outshot 22-8 and Starsia-Lasagna stopped 11 between the pipes.
Ready to relieve their frustrations, the Lions took on the Davidson Wildcats (6-9) on the same field that they had lost on the previous day. Revenge is a good motivator, as the Lions came out charging to an early 3-0 lead and eventually took the game 5-1.
The Lions refused to be humiliated two days in a row and succeeded by drawing first blood at 31:54 of the first. The goal was credited to Campbell, her first of two in the game. Over 10 minutes later, the Lions struck once again, as junior forward Alon Donohue found the back of the net on a pass from sophomore forward Melissa Macomber at 20:32. This was Donohue's first score of the season and turned out to be all Columbia needed.
Senior forward Ellen Werner completed the first half slew of goals at 3:27, making it 3-0 at the half. The Wildcats saw a glimmer of hope when Kathleen Fenn scored to bring Davidson within two with 20:26 remaining in the second half. The goal ended Davidson's scoreless streak just shy of 266 minutes.
Macomber washed away the Wildcats' hopes when she slipped the ball passed the Davidson goalie at 12:29. Sophomore Katie Rose Thornton was given the assist, her first point of the season, making the score 4-1.
Campbell put the exclamation point on the victory with her team leading 11th goal of the season, her second of the game, with 4:28 remaining. Starsia-Lasanga had to turn away only four shots as the Lion defense held Davidson to seven shots. The win gives Columbia eight wins on the year, a new high for wins in a single season.
"Davidson was a great win for us," Zullo said. "We thought we were equally matched, or maybe we had the upper hand, but we knew if we played our A game, we would do well, and that's just what happened."
It is worth noting that Macomber was recently named both the ECAC and Ivy League Player of the Week for her two-goal performance versus Brown last weekend. Meanwhile, first-year defender Meghan Hughes made the Ivy honor roll for her defensive prowess against Brown and Lafayette.
The Lions finish their stretch of road games this Wednesday as they travel to Hempstead to take on Hofstra (7-8).
They will return to Baker Field this Saturday to play Ivy opponent Dartmouth at 10:30 a.m.