While they ended their inaugural Division I season with a big loss to No. 20 George Mason Tuesday, the Colonials showed late-game grit that could indicate a promising road ahead.
The Colonials classify themselves as a strong second half team, evidenced when they held the Patriots to just three second-half goals in the 13-4 loss. Up 10-0 in the second half, George Mason switched to its back up goalie Carolyn Whittenberg. Head Coach Jen Morris said even though her team was not facing GMU’s starting lineup in the second half, she credited the Colonials for staying strong.
Senior co-capitan Gabrielle Fowler agreed.
“We look at who won the second half like the game starts over from zero. We are just a young team, and when we settle down and gain confidence there will be more wins,” she said.
The Colonials, who finished at 4-12 overall and 0-7 in the Atlantic 10, were not discouraged with their record.
“Our first season went well,” Fowler said. ” It didn’t show up in the wins, but any first-season team is going to have trouble pulling off a winning record.”
The Colonials did show their grit, hanging with the top-20 Patriots to keep the deficit at three for the first 20 minutes. The damage started when GMU exploded for seven goals in the final 10 minutes, making it 10-0 at the half.
In the second half, the Colonials remained competitive with freshmen Meghan McDonough, Jamie Lee and Heidi Mayer combining for four goals.
Morris said this freshmen play will be key to the team’s success in the future. She said because her freshmen saw so much playing time this season compared to others in the conference, they will have valuable experience.
“I’m looking forward to a strong year; it’s only going to be better,” she said.
The Colonials have five scholarship freshmen this year and will have three next year, while only losing two seniors, a fact that makes Fowler and her team excited for success in years to come.
“We are going to improve, with a little more experience the games will be in our favor. In three years, when the freshmen now are seniors, it will be a totally different game,” Fowler said.