LACROSSE: The Cambridge women stole Oxford’s thunder to come away with the only Light Blue victory of the day.
In the women’s lacrosse Oxford had the better start, with the crowd thinking they had scored early on, but the referee ruled that the ball had not crossed the line after clattering into the post. Another, less contentious, disallowed goal followed, and Cambridge cleared their lines happy to have held the scores level.
Still it was Oxford who took the lead, but were immediately pinned back by a goal from Alana Livesey after a silky period of play circling the goal.
Oxford again struck to make it 2-1, but Dani Allard pulled it back to level when the ball was flicked into the Oxford fan and slashed into the net. Shortly afterwards Anna Pugh clipped it in from the edge of the fan to take the score to 3-2.
Isy Foster then blocked the Dark Blue keeper’s clearance to win back possession that lead to a well-worked goal from Livesey, giving Cambridge a two-goal lead.
Two goals from Ellie Walshe – the first from a penalty; the second when the ball was lobbed forward to find her unmarked – took the scores to 6-2 at half-time and Cambridge were firmly in control.
And their domination was to continue when a goal came from Pugh after half-time, followed by an Oxford yellow card lead. Ellie Russell contributed well to help Cambridge take advantage of the man-up, and the Varsity trophy seemed in reach with at 8-2.
The Cambridge girls celebrating their win
But a comeback looked possible when a good period for Oxford lead to a goal, despite a wasted penalty. It was shot-lived, however and Cambridge hit back with a penalty from Georgie Prichard.
Each side exchanged goals to take it to 10-4 entering the final quarter. In the most even quarter of the game, Oxford pulled it back to 10-5, and then hit the post in what could have drawn scores even tighter.
But a Light Blue penalty restored the six-goal advantage. They rounded the game off with a glorious piece of passing play, moving the ball the whole length of the field with several passes to deposit the ball in the back of the net before the crowd even realised play had restarted. A late consolation for Oxford made the final score 12-6, earning the Lacrosse girls a well-earned Varsity triumph.
In the other games of the day, the men lost 12-0, the mixed team lost 9-8 and the women’s seconds lost a thriller 6-5.
Photographs by Sonali Campion