Bates ready to take on Eastern Connecticut in NCAAs
NCAA Division III Regional
at Tufts University
Kraft Field, Somerville, Mass.
Saturday, Nov. 12
Tufts vs. Johnson & Wales, 11 a.m.
Bates vs. Eastern Connecticut State, 1:30 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 13
Final, 1 p.m.
Ticket prices per match:
$6 adults; $3 students and senior citizens; $2 children 12 and under
LEWISTON, Maine — As long as the Bates College women’s soccer team plays the way it has the last couple of weeks, says head coach Jim Murphy, the Bobcats will be just fine this weekend, as they begin play in the NCAA Division III Tournament for the first time since 1996.
|All-NESCAC midfielder Molly Wagner and the Bobcats take on the Warriors of Eastern Connecticut State Saturday afternoon at Tufts University.|
“I’ve asked some other coaches who have played against them about (Eastern Connecticut),” Murphy said, when asked about Bates’ first-round opponent, Eastern Connecticut State University. “Other coaches have different philosophies, but I’m much more concerned about how we play. And we were very, very good last weekend.”
Indeed, Bates won its first New England Small College Athletic Conference championship last weekend, culminated by a 2-1, double-overtime win over Tufts, the host and top seed. The Bobcats carried play for most of the game, reflected in a 17-9 advantage in shots on goal.
In the latest NSCAA rankings, Bates is 10th in the nation, first in New England.
The Bobcats average 2.76 goals per game, over half a goal better than any other team in their very competitive conference, and have tied the school mark in victories for a season, at 13-3-1. And they’re riding an unbeaten streak of eight games, at 7-0-1.
But the opposing Warriors (12-5-2), too, are playing very well: they began the season with four straight losses, but currently are on an eight-game winning streak and have won the Little East Conference championship for the second time in three seasons. Six Eastern Connecticut players earned all-league honors, headed by senior first-teamers Meghann Booth, a midfielder/forward, and Caitlin Buzzell, a forward. Senior forward Jenn Orme, a second-teamer, was the conference tournament MVP and has 12 goals and 10 assists this season.
Should Bates prevail in Saturday’s game, the Bobcats could well get a rematch the NESCAC championship game on Sunday. Tufts (12-3-1) and Johnson & Wales (13-6-1) face off in the other first-round matchup at Tufts on Saturday at 11 a.m.
Click here to find directions to Kraft Field.