The Harvard laxwomen received an unpleasant welcome yesterday afternoon upon their arrival in Amherst, where the University of Massachusetts Minuteman outmaneuvered the awestruck Crimson squad to post a 12-7 victory.
The Harvard team opened on the right foot, leading by a narrow one-goal margin for the first 15 minutes of the game until the Minutemen put their offense in gear. Once rolling, the UMass attack whipped off several quick goals to go ahead 6-3 at the half.
The Crimson had the opportunities to score but couldn't react quickly enough to execute their pass-and-cut scoring plays. Feeling stifled, the Harvard attack once again reverted to their old habit of going one-on-one with the opposition.
Once again, freshman Lisa Kent proved herself capable of going through the defense in a pinch. Kent contributed three goals, making her the Crimson's high scorer for the third time in four games.
The sharpest goal for the laxwomen came when Kent made her cut in front of the goal and turned just in time to receive a pass from attack wing Sue St. Louis, who had positioned herself behind the goal. Kent then wheeled with the ball and quick-sticked it pass an unsuspecting Minuteman goalie.
Near the goal, the Minuteman defense was awesome, allowing the usually potent Crimson attack a mere 15 shots on goal. Many times their keen stickchecking enabled them to catch the Harvard team off guard and swipe the ball before they came within shooting range.
"We were playing too timidly," Defenseman Chris Sailer said last night. "A lot of us came into the game in awe of them and didn't play as aggressively as we should have," Sailer added.
The Crimson will face off against Wellesley on Wednesday and should have no trouble pulling their attack together for this game, but Coach Carole Kleinfelder expects to have a tougher time with Brown's eight-man zone on Saturday.