After a year away from the top spot, the Bowdoin women’s basketball team returned to the NESCAC pinnacle last weekend, winning the conference crown.
Men’s basketball and men’s and women’s hockey weren’t as fortunate in conference play.
Top-ranked Bowdoin dispatched Trinity 74-56 in the semifinals behind 18 points from Leah Rubega Saturday, then held off Amherst 49-46 Sunday in the conference final. It was the Polar Bears’ eighth conference championship. Bowdoin never trailed in the final, but had to go to the wire before finally sending the Jeffs packing. The Polar Bears led 26-24 at halftime and got clutch free throws down the stretch from Jill Henrikson and Sabrina Cote. Caitlin Hynes led Bowdoin with 13 points. Henrikson added 11. The Polar Bears forced 18 turnovers.
Bowdoin (23-4 and riding a nine-game win streak) will host the first and second rounds of the NCAA Division III tournament this weekend. Friday at 7 p.m., the Polar Bears battle Castleton (Vt.) State. Muhlenberg and Westfield State meet at 5 p.m. The winners square off Saturday at 7 p.m.
On Monday, Leah Rubega was named the Player of the Week of both NESCAC and the New England Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Association. Rubega averaged 13.5 points, 9.5 rebounds and 1.5 blocks during the NESCAC semifinals and finals.
Bowdoin’s men’s basketball team was ousted 76-46 by host Middlebury in the NESCAC semifinals Saturday. The Polar Bears finished the year 17-9. Bowdoin shot just 28 percent and turned the ball over 18 times. Mark Phillips had 14 points and seven rebounds in a losing effort.
The Bowdoin men’s hockey squad lost 3-2 in overtime at Williams Saturday in the NESCAC quarterfinals, ending its season at 11-12-2. Colin MacCormack had both goals for the Polar Bears. Connor Olvany had the game-winner at the 9:10 mark of OT. Chris Rossi made 31 saves in defeat.
Bowdoin’s women’s hockey team also fell in the NESCAC quarterfinals Saturday, 2-1 at Colby. The Polar Bears wound up 11-11-1 on the year. Lindsay McNamara had Bowdoin’s lone goal. Sage Santangelo stopped 18 shots.
The Bowdoin men’s swimming and diving team was 10th at the NESCAC championships at Wesleyan University last weekend. Mac Routh set a new school record in the 50 butterfly, placing third in the event. Nathan Mecray set a new school mark in the 100 breaststroke, finishing second.
Bowdoin women’s swimmer Caitlin Callahan, a junior, was named all-NESCAC after placing second in the 50 breaststroke at the conference championship meet. Callahan set a new school record.
Bowdoin’s indoor track and field team broke three school records and earned several provisional NCAA qualifying times at the Open New England championships hosted by Boston University last weekend. Shemeica Binns set a new school record in the shot put. Grace Kerr set a new mark in the 500. The 4×800 women’s relay team of Molly Duffy, Dana Riker, Jess Sokolow and Kerr also set a new school record. Ali Chase (800), Elsa Millet (400), Kelsey Borner (weight throw) and Thompson Ogilvie (mile) also earned NCAA provisional qualifying times. The Polar Bears will compete in the ECAC championships next weekend at Tufts. The NCAA field will be announced by Monday.
Bowdoin’s Jill Henrikson drove around a defender during the Polar Bears’ conference championship showdown with Amherst last weekend. (Brian Beard photo).
The Polar Bears held on for a 49-46 win and captured the NESCAC title for the eighth time in nine years, unleashing a celebration on the court. Bowdoin will host the NCAA Division III first and second rounds this weekend. (Brian Beard photo).