The Keene State College women’s lacrosse team is off to a difficult start for the 2016 season, opening up with a two game losing streak last week.

On Wednesday, March 2, the Owls faced off against the Emerson College Lions on the road where they began the first half with a 4-1 lead. Senior Kaitlin Nolan netted two goals with help from first-year Samantha Ballard and sophomore Taylor Farland who each added a goal of their own. The Lions would power back to take a 7-6 lead at the end of the first half. Goals from Emerson’s Meredith Weber, Tara Windsor and company would contribute to the Lions first half comeback.

In the second half, the game would remain tightly contested with goals from Emerson seniors Guerin Morissette and Katie Lemire extending their lead, only to be matched by two goals from Farland early in the half. With the score 9-8, the Lions would enhance their lead to 12 with a free position goal from freshman, Emily Quinn.

Luke Stergiou / Senior Photographer

Luke Stergiou / Senior Photographer

Nolan would respond for the Owls by scoring twice, making the score 12-10. Emerson would begin to run away with the game, scoring five of the next six goals and giving them a seven goal lead. Noland and Ballard would score a goal each with the game out of reach, giving the Lions the 17-13 win. The Lions would end the game with the advantage in shots on goal and ground balls. Junior goalkeeper, Alison Argiro ended her game early with only two saves to be relieved by freshman Anna Obrien who produced six saves of her own.

On Saturday the Owls came back home to face the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Engineers. Nolan put together another four-goal performance for the Owls, threading three of them in the first half with goals from Farland and company to bring the Owls within one, ending the first half at 7-6. Goals from MIT’s Kira Schott, Katie Notarangelo, Nadia Wallace and Cecilia McCormick would produce the Engineers’ lead.

The Owls would rally back to quickly take an 8-7 lead in the second half, with junior Kelly Chadnick who had her first goal in almost a year, and sophomore Tori Weinstock. MIT would swiftly erase the Owls’ lead and never look back with goals from McCormick, sophomore Emily Young and junior Hannah Levy, who would end the game with two assist and three goals. McCormick would lead the Engineers with four goals.

Nolan, Weinstock and junior Jenna Bellano would net goals late in the second half to keep the game close, but it would not be enough to overcome the Engineers as the Owls would lose the contest by a score of 14-12. Owls goalkeeper, Alison Argiro ended the game with a much improved performance from her previous outing at Emerson College with 12 saves against MIT.

Nick Tocco can be contacted at ntocco@kscequinox.com