Playing in front of a national audience at the Metropolitan Lacrosse Classic, the Michigan lacrosse team fell to Colgate, 10-7, on Sunday at Citi Field, home of the New York Mets.
The Wolverines (0-3 ECAC, 0-8 overall) faced a formidable opponent in the defending Patriot League champion Raiders (6-2), who came into the contest riding a two-game winning streak.
Michigan, in its second year as a varsity program and first in the East Coast Athletic Conference, was unfazed early on and took multiple one-goal leads in the first quarter on goals by redshirt freshman David Joseph and sophomore Will Meter. Colgate, though, seized control of the game with a 3-0 run in the second quarter and took a three-goal lead it wouldn’t relinquish into halftime.
“We played really well the first, third, and fourth quarters, but they had those goals in the second that gave them a cushion going into the second half, which is hard to come back from,” Meter said. “If we can have more consistency in the things we are emphasizing and do those in all four quarters, that will help us and we won’t give up those little runs.”
Michigan finally ended a 10-minute scoring drought with a goal by freshman Mike Hernandez with 12:45 left in the third quarter, bringing the Wolverines back to within three. Though Michigan never trailed by more than four goals, it was unable to get closer than three throughout the second half.
The Wolverines’ efforts on offense were highlighted by Meter and freshman Kyle Jackson. Meter finished with a career-best four points on two goals and two assists, while Jackson had two goals, including one on a particularly impressive play in the fourth quarter that showed off some of the promise and talent this young team has going forward.
“Each game that goes by, we keep improving on the little things that we talk about every week that we want to accomplish, which lately we’ve been doing,” Jackson said. “We are doing the little things right, and eventually those wins are going to come.”
Despite these highlights in the stat sheet, Michigan struggled on offense all game and finished shooting just 19 percent from the field. It wasn’t able to score more than two goals in any quarter. Signs of progress were evident for the Wolverines, though, as they won the faceoff battle, 13-9, and were a perfect 17-for-17 on clears.
Though Michigan was unable pick up its first win of the season, the experience of being in New York and playing at Citi Field was invaluable for the team and players.
“Being a part of that atmosphere in Citi Field was awesome, and we were blown away by what was going on,” Meter said. “It was an experience none of the guys on the team will ever forget.”
Having concluded their seven-game road trip, the Wolverines will return home this week to play Loyola (Md.) on Saturday at Michigan Stadium.