On March 5 the Bobcats took the court for their first -ever NCAA game at Feldman Arena in Danbury, Connecticut. Bates fell behind quickly, trialing 18-9 after seven minutes of play. The Bobcats stayed cold throughout, shooting 29.7 percent in the first half while Western Connecticut shot a stunning 57.7 percent., trailing 40-25, their second lowest halftime total of the season.
The Colonials opened the second half on a 12-7 run to open a 52-32 lead which seemed insurmountable. Bates played its most inspired ball of the night, holding Western Connecticut without a field goal for the next five minutes and cutting the lead to 55-47 with 9:13 to go. The Bobcats had the ball twice with a chance to cut the lead even further, but the Colonials hit their only 3-pointer of the half as the shot clock wound down to put the lead back to double figures and essentially close the door on the Bobcats' season.
In the end, Westen Conn. outplayed the Bobcats in every catagory. Most significant was their 57 to 29 percent advantage in field-goal shooting. The Colonials also out-rebounded the Bobcats 50-38 and shot 75 percent from the line while Bates shot 63 percent. Bates was able to force 24 turnovers while only giving up 12 of their own, but the Bobcats were not able to make use of them, while Western Conn. capitalized on their chances. High scorers for Bates were senior Sarah Bonkovsky (Harvard, Mass.) with 21 and sophomore Amy Taylor (Orono, Maine) with 13.
On March 8-9 the ski teams were at Stowe, Vermont to compete in NCAA Championships. Sophomore Justin Freeman (Franklin, N.H.) ended the season as an All-American, finishing third in the men's 10K classical with a time of :31:55.4. Freeman also finished 15th overall in the 20K freestyle with a time of 59:25.2. Classmate David Chamberlain was a second team All-American in both the classical and freestyle races with a pair of sixth-place finishes, with times of :32:14.0 and :57:45.8 respectively. This marked the first time in school history that two skiers earned All-America status in the same year, while Chamberlain was the first skier to earn two All-America bids in the same season.
For the women's nordic team, Senior captain Katie Gould (Williamstown, Mass.) finished 25th in the 15K freestyle and 30th in the 5K classical with times of 54:46.5 and 20:04.9 respectively, while Junior Jennifer Bergeron (South Burlington, Vt.) finished 29th in the 5K classical with a time of 20:04.3 and 36th in the 15K freestyle with a time of 58:22.7. In the slalom races senior Sean Clark (Raymond, Maine) finished 15th in the giant slalom and 25th in the slalom with combined times of 2:13.97 and 95.66 respectively. Senior Sandy Perrins (Placerville, Colo.) finished 24th in the giant slalom with a combined time of 2:16.76 and 27th in the slalom with a combined time of 98.43, while first-year Bryce Hubner (Manchester, Vt.) finished 28th in the giant slalom and 32nd in the slalom with combined times of 2:18.27 and 109.84 respectively.
The Bobcats finished in 10th place, their highest finish ever at the NCAA. They were also fourth among teams from New England, their first finish in that spot all season.
The three day NISRA Individual tournament from February 28 to March 2 featured three Bobcat athletes. Seniors Helen Baldwin (Marion, Mass.) and Pat Cosquer (Westfield, N.J.), and junior Anne Decker (Brooklyn, N.Y.) all represented Bates at Dartmouth. Baldwin lost her first round match 9-3, 9-2, 9-1 and then lost her consolation match after leading two sets to one, 9-4, 4-9, 6-9, 9-6, 9-2. Cosquer fell in his first round match 3-0, but battled a through a closer match in his consolation match before falling 16-17, 15-9, 15-11, 15-4. Decker fell in the first round by a score of 9-3, 9-0, 9-0 and in the consolation match she fell 9-2, 9-8, 9-1.
Sophomores David Burke of Andover, Mass., and Damon Bowe of Houma, La., were multiple All-New England selections at the men's championships held Feb. 28-March 2 at Williams College. Burke, in his second season at Bates, has rewritten the school's diving records. He recently became the first diver in Bates history to qualify for the NCAA national championships when he set back-to-back school records in the 1-meter event in dual meet competition. At the New England championships, Burke finished fourth in the 3-meter event with a score of 416.10 and fifth in the 1-meter event with a score of 388.50. In both events he broke his own school records for 11 dives. Bowe was the team's top individual scorer during the season and at the New England championships. He finished third in the 200-yard butterfly (1:57.11), third in the 400-yard individual medley (4:10.49), and fourth in the 200-yard individual medley (1:57.65). His times in the two medley events broke school records, topping the 400 mark by 12 seconds and the 200 mark by three seconds. In the 200 butterfly and 400 medley, Bowe achieved the NCAA national championship 'B' standard, earning a berth at the championships in the 400 medley.
Junior Steve Simmons of Winter Park, Florida was less than a second away from making All-New England status by finishing 9th in the 200 yard backstroke with a time of 1:58.93. He also finished 15th in the 50 yard fly with a time of 24.49. Bates finished the meet in 12th place behind Bowdoin in 11th and Colby in 8th.
March 20-22 Men's NCAA Championships at Miami, Ohio
Coaches Al Fereshetian and Joe Woodhead traveled to the NCAA division
III national championships being held in Oshkosh, Wisconsin with four
of the team who had qualified in the regular season. On Friday March 7,
the 35-pound weight throwers took center stage. Seniors Paul Kolter
N.H.) and Spencer Potter (Waitsfield, Vt.) ended their careers at Bates
in tremendous fashion as they both finished as All-Americans. Kolter came
into the meet ranked eighth in the nation, but on this day he threw a
best 56'-4.5" to finish second. Potter also threw a personal best
54'-4.75" and finished fourth overall. The top six in each event at
the nationals are given the honor of being All-Americans. Sophomore Bill
McEvila (Hartford, Conn.) placed 11th overall with a throw of
First-year runner Matt Twiest (Albuquerque, N.M.) finished 8th in the
meters with a personal best time of 3:59.57. For the women, sophomore
Myrick (Kodiak, Alaska) also competed in the 1500-meter run.
Myrick did not qualify for the finals as she finished sixth in her
heat with a time of 4:48.81. The men's team finished 10th in the meet,
second among New England schools behind only Wheaton.
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Last modified: 2/24/97 by asl