Yale’s Late Goal Too Much for Crimson
The Harvard field hockey team (2-4, 0-1 Ivy) lost in the final minutes of Saturday’s game against rival Yale (4-1, 1-0 Ivy) at Jordan Field, thus continuing a four-game skid. With less than four minutes left on the clock, Bulldog junior Mia Rosati took a pass from freshman teammate Georgia Holland and managed to push the ball across the line through a crowded goal-line scramble.
The goal represented the only blemish on the day for sophomore goalie Cynthia Tassopoulos, who stymied a feverish Yale attack all game long with six saves. Tassopulos’ play kept the Crimson in the game throughout the contest, as the Bulldogs enjoyed a majority of the possessions, piecing several dangerous attacks together and finally culminating in Rosati’s game-winner.
Tassopoulos ranks second in the Ancient Eight in saves (34) and third in goals-against average (1.59). The sophomore was an All-Ivy honorable mention in 2009.
Afterward, Harvard coach Sue Caples was quick to acknowledge the stalwart defense exhibited by her keeper.
“You really don’t want goalies to have to make amazing saves,” Caples said. “She has been standing on her head a little bit. Yale had some very high-percentage goal-scoring opportunities. [Cynthia]’s a very smart goalkeeper, very skilled and in some ways made some things look routine. She came up with some big saves today, definitely.”
The Crimson worked hard defensively all afternoon, consistently frustrating the Bulldogs’ attack—currently ranked third in the Ivy League in scoring average.
As time was winding down, it appeared that the game would head into overtime, but Yale’s late goal ended the possibility, and Harvard could not respond with three minutes left.
The Crimson had several good chances to score throughout the game but could not capitalize. In the final minute of the second half, a defensive interception caused a breakaway, producing a shot on the Bulldogs’ goal that slid just wide. Freshman Emily Cain, Yale’s second-half keeper, blocked a promising Harvard shot in the second half with 22 minutes to go to keep it scoreless.
The Crimson’s best chance of the game occurred in the last 18 minutes of play when Harvard forced a turnover in the Bulldogs’ defensive third. Senior forward Chloe Keating intercepted a Yale pass and quickly slid the ball to freshman Rachael Rosenfeld, who fired off a rocket from the left side of the field—only to see Cain deftly redirect the ball wide of the post.
After a first half in which the Crimson seemed to be back on its heels, Harvard came out organized and aggressive to open the second. In the opening moments of the second half, sophomore forward Katelin Wahl fired a shot that sailed just high of the cage.
The Bulldogs once again resumed their advantage in possession, working the ball around and searching for a way through the determined Harvard defense. Harvard’s best spell occurred with about 20 minutes to play, when the Crimson had several shots on goal—all of which fell just wide or were deflected.
“I’m pretty disappointed about the outcome, but I’m proud of the girls and how they played,” junior co-captain Carly Dickson said. “It’s a totally different feel then the rest of the Ivy League games. In the locker room, everyone is so pumped up.”
Dickson had a solid afternoon, leading Harvard with three shots, one of which was on goal, and playing all 70 minutes of the game. Yale outshot the Crimson, 17-5, and also held a 9-3 advantage in penalty corners.
Harvard will look to regroup at home against Northeastern next Wednesday before heading to Philadelphia this weekend to battle Penn in its second Ivy League tilt.