William and Mary continues to garner comparisons between itself and a diesel engine, in the sense that neither starts very well when it’s cold outside. Saturday in Annapolis, the storyline remained the same as the Tribe (0-3, 0-0 CAA) tumbled into a deficit early against Navy, eventually recording a 12-9 loss.
Seconds after making her first save in the first fifty-seven seconds, sophomore goalie Alex Lista narrowly missed a second Navy shot, putting the Midshipmen up 1-0 just over the one minute mark. Navy (5-1, 0-0 Patriot League) seized the next draw control 20 seconds later, but Lista denied the corresponding shot and faced yet another that sailed high of the net. The Tribe forced a turnover and held possession, limiting the early damage to just one goal. Before this game, the College struggled off the opening whistle, trailing an average of three goals in the first two minutes of action.
However, consecutive failed clears by the College defense in the first three minutes continued to enable the Midshipmen’s attack. Navy capitalized at 26:46 for the 2-0 advantage.
Senior midfielder Ellen Shaffrey then created some momentum for the Tribe, controlling the draw and subsequently drawing a foul. Shaffrey rocketed in her free position shot, placing the College on the board at 26:06, the earliest score for the Tribe all season by 4 minutes and 42 seconds.
The Midshipmen claimed the next draw control; although its initial drive failed, Navy managed to find the back of the net at 23:02 after a successful clear, driving the score to 3-1. The Tribe answered seven minutes later, firing three shots over the course of 80 seconds. Freshman attack Abby Corkum’s first shot was saved and her second shot was wide, but senior midfielder Amanda Johnson’s shot rang true at 16:05.
In response, Navy extended the margin to 4-2 just 22 seconds later, then 5-2 at 15:13. The Tribe also partook in the offensive fireworks as sophomore defender Abby Junior took the draw control, and promptly scored off a free position shot at 14:54 to bring the score to 5-3.
Momentum continued to seesaw back and forth. Seizing the opportunity off of another failed clear by the Tribe, Navy increased its lead to 6-3 with nine minutes left. The College attack, spearheaded by Corkum and freshman midfielder McKinley Wade, then narrowed the Navy lead to 6-5 with five minutes left.
However, the Midshipmen recovered, and the teams traded goals for a 7-6 margin at half, with Johnson adding her second of the game after a Tribe draw control. Navy edged the Tribe in this critical category by a 14-9 count. Of the 21 total goals, 13 were scored off of the initial possession resulting from a draw control.
The opening minutes of the second half decided the game, as the Navy attack rattled off four unanswered goals en route to an 11-6 lead with 18 minutes remaining in regulation, the largest deficit of the game for the Tribe. The College has not led for a single minute of the 2015 season. Against Navy, the Tribe added three more minutes to a particularly rueful stat: time trailed by five or more goals.The Tribe has trailed by a five-goal margin or more for 111:18 minutes out of 180 total minutes of game time, roughly 62 percent of the season.
Sophomore midfielder Shannon Quinn revitalized the Tribe with a goal at 15:18, assisted by freshman midfielder Danielle Palmucci. The comeback bid continued with Johnson’s third goal, completing the hat trick with 10 minutes remaining. However, the Tribe’s efforts stalled out as Navy extended the lead one last time to 12-8; with a Corkum goal, the College trimmed the lead to 12-9 for the final score.
The Tribe faltered in turnovers and groundballs, giving up possession 23 times versus the Midshipmen’s 17, while losing the groundball battle by a 22-15 mark.
Up next for the Tribe is a road matchup against No. 13 University of Louisville (3-0) this Saturday in Louisville, Kentucky. Game time is set for 1 p.m.