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While Harvard students pack their bags and prepare to leave Cambridge for the Thanksgiving holidays, the Crimson varsity soccer team is planning to delay its fall festivities one week.
Underdog Harvard will face Hartwick College on Saturday at 1p.m. on the Business School Field for the right to enter the NCAA University Division semifinal round in San Jose. California, on December 4.
The Crimson boosters won the District 1 regional tournament and their 13th game of the season Monday with a sound 4-0 thrashing of Brown. Last week, Hartwick edged N.Y.U.. 4-3, to claim the District 1 title and a position opposite Harvard in the national quarterfinals.
Hartwick has a 10-1-1 record, its only loss coming at the hands of N.Y.U. two weeks ago.
"According to coaches I've talked to," coach Bruce Munro said. "Hartwick has one of the best defenses in the country."
One of those coaches has played both squads and has picked Hartwick as the favorite. "The Cornell coach told me we have one of the best forward lines in the country." Munro said, "but he felt that Hartwick is a better balanced team, with greates strength on defense." Considering that Harvard has registered nine shutouts this season, that says quite a lot for the Warriors' defenders.
If the game is to become a contest between Harvards unstoppable line and Hartwick's impenetrable defense, the Crimson must hope for the recovery of several injured players, Solomon Gomez, Phil Kydes, and Russ Bell all played with injuries against Brown, Munro did not hold practice yesterday to aid bruised players, and Kydes reports that his leg is feeling better. Munro is still uncertain, however, about Bell's condition.
A Harvard upset of Hartwick would not be a surprise in this year's NCAA play-offs. In the Far West, San Francisco, ranked first in the nation, went through four overtime periods in a 2-2 deadlock with San Diego State, San Francisco was finally awarded the victory because it had two more corner kicks than the Azters.
In the Mid-Atlantic regional final, Penn also went four overtimes in a 1-1 tie with Philadelphia Textile. The Quakers won the match, 3-1, on cornerkicks.
In the Midwest, Cleveland State knocked defending co-champion Michigan State out of the tourney with a 3-0 victory.
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