Lady Bison Lacrosse routs Adams State

By Michael Stewart, Assistant Sports Editor

The Oklahoma Baptist women’s lacrosse team kicked off a six-game home stand with a 19-6 victory over RMAC foes Adams State University Saturday, March 23.

The Lady Bison entered the matchup on a five-game losing streak, all of which were on the road.

However, OBU showed up ready to defend Bison Hill.

“We knew we had to show up and work for every ground ball, every pass, and every goal,” sophomore Taylor Skomp said. “We are confident every time we walk on the field, but we knew everyone would have to show up ready to perform.”

The Lady Bison came storming out of the gates.

Junior Brooke Harden opened the scoring for OBU at the 27:41 mark in the first half, which sparked four more goals for the Lady Bison.

Skomp, freshman Shay Morgan, and junior Lauren McCormack all found the back of the net before Adams State.

Once ASU finally found a goal, OBU freshman Devin Miller followed up with a goal of her own, while Skomp completed a hat trick before 10 minutes were gone in the game.

ASU scored again to make it 7-1 but the Lady responded right back with a pair of goals from Morgan and freshman Emery Kennedy.

OBU would give up one more goal before halftime, but would respond again with scores from Miller, freshman Nina Handley and Kennedy.

Handley’s goal was her first career goal for OBU.

“Offense set the tone this game and it showed,” junior Brooke Harden said. “We really have started collaborating as a team.”

Every time ASU found a goal, OBU would come back with more of their own. This helped the maintain a lead into halftime.

The Lady Bison would keep the same intensity in the second half; Miller would add another goal within the first 50 seconds of the second half.

The Lady Bison scored four more goals after Miller’s opening goal to push the lead to 17-3.

McCormack and freshman Madison Gordon each scored one more time to put the finishing touches on the emphatic win.

“I’m really proud of the way our team came out and competed,” Harden said. “We are a newer team, so we have a learning curve, but as the season has gone on, we have really developed and gotten better with each game.”

The Lady Bison had eight different players find the back of the net as the offense continued to find its rhythm from earlier in the week.

This was OBU’s first conference win since April 1, 2017.

McCormack finished with a game-high five points on three goals and two assists, while Gordon, Harden, and Skomp each had four points apiece.

Also, Miller finished with a hat trick. Defensively, junior Courtney Barnickle picked up her third win of the season in goal, collecting 11 saves against just six goals allowed.

Though the team has a difficult start to the season, the OBU lacrosse team has been able to grow and get closer as a group because of it.

“Our biggest strength is we all love each other, and we walk on the field ready to play,” Skomp said. “We spend a lot of time together outside of lacrosse growing as friends and growing in our faith.”

The team leads the NCAA in draw controls and ground balls.

“We all view lacrosse as a job,” Skomp said. “We are there to work hard, give it everything we have and walk off the field knowing we played to the best of our abilities.”

The Lady Bison now sit at 3-5 overall and 1-4 in conference play.

Next up, the team takes on Midland in a nonconference match-up, Saturday, Apr 6.

“We have been putting a lot of work in on and off the field,” Harden said. “I think it’s going to show in our upcoming games.”

So far this season, the Lady Bison have traveled to Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah. They will head out-of-state for their April 27 meet in St. Charles, MO against Lindenwood University.

Last Week in Bison Sports

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The Lady Bison softball team split their series with East Central this past weekend. The Bison won the first game of the weekend 9-3, but were unable to continue their success through the second game which they lost 16-8. The Bison will be at home this weekend to face off against Southern Nazarene.

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Kevin Andrusch and his doubles partner Gianlucca Galdi (not pictured) scored the only win for the Bison last weekend at Harding University.

 

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The Lady Bison lacrosse team traveled Colorado to face conference opponent CSU-Pueblo, but were defeated by a score of 22-1.

Lady Bison lacrosse looks to change the game

By Albert Monge, Contributing Writer   (Courtesy photo/Bison Athletics)

The Oklahoma Baptist University lacrosse team has been through quite the whirlwind in the 2017-2018 season.

Under the direction of Coach Jordan Beech, who is in his third season on the top seat, the Lady Bison have broken numerous school records, and have even led the country in statistics such as caused turnovers per game.

Last year, the team graduated nine seniors, some of whom were leaders in overall production and some statistical categories.

Returning only three seniors, the Lady Bison had high hopes for their first season as full participants in Division II.

Senior Allison Ingrim is a four year-starting midfielder from St. Louis, Missouri.

“We’ve worked really hard and done the best that we could to play at the DII level,” Ingrim said.

Ingrim is one of the returning seniors and also one of the statistical leaders for the team, ranking first in caused turnovers (32), second in ground balls (29) and third in draw controls (39).

As a leader both on and off the field, Allison said she felt like she needed to take this season to be a leader by example with such a young team.

Not only is the context of the team young, but there are a few girls on the team who have never played lacrosse before.

Brooke Harden, Anastasia Mendoza, and Monique Mossop are just a few of the newcomers to the team, as well as to the sport.

Sophomore Lauren McCormack is a native of Allen, Texas and a two-year starter on the squad. She has made quite the impression on Bison Hill in her time here.

“I want all the new girls and the freshman to know that I see them working really hard and that they’re making me work harder,” McCormack said.

She holds the record for draw controls per game (4.28), assists per game (0.88), and is tied with Ingrim for all-time assists (22).

McCormack, who plays attack, saw this season as a transitional year for the team, and said she felt there is a lot of room for growth, with the loss of some key players that were a part of the team last year.

The team took their annual trip to Colorado over spring break and saw more success than they had seen previous years.

Emily Bontekoe, senior defender from Howell, Michigan, talked about the trip and said, “Compared to previous years, I think we did a lot better. We were able to get a couple wins in, and it kept up the mentality.”

The Lady Bison “mentality” described here must be one of success, with the team racking up multiple different broken records in their trip to Colorado. These would include most points in a game (37), assists (12) and draw controls (22).

This trip would include some personal success in the record-breaking area as well, with McCormack break-ing the career assist record (21), set by Emily Gilbert, who played from 2014-2017.

Sophomore Breanna Wichert broke the record for most points in a game (12), previously set by Alexis Martin.

And finally, Ingrim tied the record for draw controls in a single game (11), set before by McCormack.

With the great success, there came some drawbacks.

The squad saw some injuries to key players, including Wichert and Ingrim both getting concussions in the same game, and McCormack battling a nagging foot injury.

This would leave the women with no substitutions for the last game they played in Colorado, which is a major setback that the team had to deal with.

Luckily, the team will have a two-week break between games, hopefully allowing for some those injuries to heal.

The Lady Bison Lacrosse team will finish the 2017-2018 with a five-game stretch. The team looks to overcome the four-win barrier that has plagued them over the last few years of the Division II era.

Bontekoe said she sees an opportunity to make this season different.

She saw her senior season as an opportunity to have fun, in the leadership role of being a senior, and a four-year starter on such a young team.

With high hopes for the rest of the season, the Lady Bison must go on the road for their next four games before concluding the season at home against Lindenwood at the OBU Lacrosse Complex, which will also be their senior night, Saturday, April 28, at 1 pm.