WATERVILLE, Maine -- First-year forward Adah Lindquist scored the game's only goal with 3:57 left in the second half, and Cristina Vega had seven saves in the Bates field hockey team's 1-0 victory at Colby Wednesday night. The eighth and final berth in the NESCAC playoffs was at stake in both teams' regular-season finale.
Bates (7-8, 3-7 NESCAC) will play at No. 1 nationally ranked Bowdoin in the quarterfinal round of the NESCAC Field Hockey Championship this Saturday at 1pm.
With the victory, the Bobcats reached the seven-win mark for the first time since 2005, when the Bobcats finished 7-8. Bates also won three NESCAC games for the first time since 2005.
Colby (7-8, 2-8 NESCAC) settled for ninth place in the final New England Small College Athletic Conference standings, one place out of postseason play.
Bates came into the contest only needing a victory over the Mules to advance to the playoffs. Colby needed some help from Connecticut College and had to beat Bates to make the playoffs. With an earlier 6 p.m. game, Connecticut College eliminated Wesleyan with a 3-2 victory. The Mules knew by halftime that the second half was going to be like a playoff game, with the winner advancing.
The Mules did have the better of the play for the first 10 to 15 minutes of the second half, but the Bobcats settled down and dominated field position in the last 20 minutes.
The pressure Bates put on paid off when an errant Colby pass went to Lindquist (Wayne, Pa.), who blasted a hard shot to the right corner of the cage. Lindquist put all three of her shots on goal on the night.
The rivals equaled one another in shots attempted, with 11 for both, while Bates had a 5-3 edge in penalty corners. Both Vega (Needham, Mass.), one of Bates' three senior captains, and her Colby goalkeeping counterpart, Sarah Evans, finished with seven saves. It was the third shutout of the season for Vega, and the one that required the most saves to achieve.
March 23, 2016 Field hockey recognized by NFHCA for academic excellence
November 30, 2015 Caroline O'Reilly named all-region in field hockey
October 28, 2015 Field hockey wins 1-0 at Colby, earns first playoff bid since 2010
October 24, 2015 No. 3 Panthers move past field hockey 5-0
October 22, 2015 Field hockey falls on penalty strokes at Southern Maine, 4-3
October 18, 2015 Amherst tops field hockey 3-0 with three first-half goals
October 17, 2015 Field hockey falls 5-0 to No. 16 Jumbos
October 14, 2015 Bates field hockey stuns No. 9 Babson, 1-0
October 10, 2015 Connecticut College tips field hockey, 1-0
October 7, 2015 Beaton, O'Reilly score as field hockey wins 2-1 at Endicott
October 3, 2015 Beaton powers field hockey to 2-0 win over Trinity
September 27, 2015 No. 18 Williams pulls away from field hockey in second half, 3-0
September 26, 2015 Beaton, Lough lead field hockey past Wesleyan, ending NESCAC drought
September 23, 2015 Lough's hat trick marks 4-0 field hockey win over Thomas
September 15, 2015 Field hockey holds No. 2 Bowdoin close for a half, falls 5-0
September 12, 2015 Field hockey plays well in 1-0 loss at Hamilton
September 9, 2015 Field hockey finishes suspended game vs. Husson with 4-1 victory
September 8, 2015 Youthful Bates field hockey team eager to go in 2015