With a final of 19-12, the Ipswich Tigers girls lacrosse team came up short on June 12, seeing their playoff run come to a close at the hands of Manchester Essex.

The MIAA Division 2 semifinal started off in full control of Manchester Essex. The Hornets were able to put three goals on the board quickly, which built their momentum for the rest of the game.

By the time Ipswich was able to push up the field to their patient offense, Manchester Essex and their suffocating defense were able to force some low percentage shots. The half ended at 7-5 in favor of Manchester Essex.

"During our season match-up, we started off close with them in the first half and answering back and forth," said head coach Kerri O’Connor. "Then, they took it away in the second half which was a little too similar to when we played them in the [regular] season."

This Manchester Essex defense was backed up by goalie Isabella Pomeroy, a constant force in net with 13 saves in the game. That defense led to an offense taken charge by Drew Charlton who found the net on nine separate occasions. The frustration in Ipswich built and it made it difficult for the offense to create easy chances.

"It was hard to adjust to it at first," said sophomore Ipswich midfielder Annie Gillis. "I think by the second half as a team we really started to get the momentum up."

Gillis and her offense were able to keep the gap close, although the lead would elude them the entirety of the game. The main contributors to staying in Tuesday’s affair included Gillis who had two goals, Haley O’Connor who had three and Hannah Herron who led the offense with four goals.

In her last game as a member of the Tigers program, senior captain Meghan O’Connor netted two goals of her own late in the second half. O’Connor is one of three seniors and captains leaving the team, along with Deirdre O’Flynn and Grace Quinn.

"Losing all the starters at the beginning of the season made it really tough to find out how to work together at the beginning of the season," said O’Connor reflecting on the season. "I was really proud though about this year how we just never gave up. We are just really close on and off the field and we just really learned how to work together and give it our all."

Ipswich’s roster will be even younger next season with only one senior on the roster. It is clear that this team will learn from this season's playoff experience and create future improvement from that. With an overall record of 13-6 on the season, expect the Tigers to come back stronger in 2019.