This post was written by Hatchet reporter Sophia Omuemu.
The last time GW faced nationally ranked Massachusetts, the Colonials lost 10-9 in a hard-fought match that came down to the final minutes.
On Friday, the Colonials eyed victory again, down only 5-4 at the half. But a barrage of UMass goals after the break halted any GW momentum and took the Atlantic 10 semifinals, 13-5.
“Overall, I thought the defense played well but we didn’t capitalize on our offensive opportunities,” head coach Tara Hannaford said.
Sophomore Rachel Mia got it going early for GW, netting the first goal of the game at the 2:44 mark of the opening half.
The Minutewoman quickly replied with a goal of their own though, and it wasn’t until eight minutes later that junior Lindsey DiAntonio could put the Colonials back on top, 2-1.
“Our team did great in the first half,” Hannaford said. “We played great team defense and we were going hard to goal.”
UMass proceeded to go on a 3-0 run over a span of eight minutes, taking a 4-2 lead with just over four minutes left in the first. Once again, Mia got the offense back on track, netting her second and final goal of the game off an assist from sophomore Jamie Bumgardner.
“On attack, we emphasized moving the ball quickly and driving hard to goal. Defensively, we were focused on good helping team defense,” Hannaford said.
GW closed the second half with high energy, after another assist from Bumgardner led to a goal by sophomore Allie Rash. Rash increased the Colonials’ total to four goals, leaving them down by only one point.
At the half, the Colonials had won six draw controls compared to the Minutewomen’s four, but it was clear that seven GW turnovers had helped UMass garner a 5-4 lead by the break.
“At the half, we just wanted to keep attacking and take care of the ball,” Hannaford said. “Unfortunately, we struggled getting the draw in the second half.”
While the Colonials struggled in the second half, the Minutewomen were clicking on all cylinders, solidifying their lead and victory early. Within the first 13 minutes of play in the half, UMass went on a 6-0 run.
The Colonials were not able to score until senior Nicole Lacey scored with just over five minutes left to play. That would be it though.
The Minutewomen netted two more goals to solidify a 13-5 lead and put an end to the Colonials’ season.
The A-10 All-Conference Second Team goalkeeper, Jess Hicks, put away seven shots against the Minutewomen. She finished her four-year career in third on GW’s all-time saves list with 250.
GW wraps the season with a 9-8 overall record, good enough for a fourth seed in this year’s conference tournament. It was the first time in program history that the Colonials secured a conference tournament bid in consecutive seasons.
“I’m very proud of this team,” Hannaford said. “They fought to the end and worked hard all season.”
This post was updated Saturday, April 27, 2013 to reflect the following:
The Hatchet incorrectly referred to the Colonials as the sixth seed in the Atlantic 10 tournament. They were the fourth seed.