HANOVER, N.H--It had the makings of another rout. The powerhouse. Harvard women's soccer team versus a Dartmouth squad struggling to reach the 500 mark. The Crimson rolled into HANOVER with a five-game unbeaten streak, never having lost to Dartmouth.
Instead, the favorites stumbled. In an excruciatingly frustrating upset, they fell to the Green, 2-1, in overtime.
The loss was especially galling since the Crimson maintained a clear territorial advantage throughout most of the game. After a sloppy first period on a muddy field. Harvard pressed the attack, keeping Dartmouth bottled up in its own half of the pitch for more than three-quarters of the second half and most of the 20-minute overtime.
But as Crimson Couch Bob Scalier pointed out in his post-mortem: "They were bating us to the ball in the critical situations all game long. We didn't play aggressively in those spots; we were standing and watching and waiting, while they played an excellent defensive game."
And the need to play catch-up soccer kept the visitors at a constant disadvantage. Dartmouth took the lead just two minutes into the game on a goal by striker Carol Radack, forcing Harvard to direct we've after wave of increasingly desperate charges at Dartmouth goalie Ester Ticknor.
Ticknor and fullbacks Linda Tuck and Elien Sears held the fort against repeated attacks by Crimson forwards Kelly Landry and Alicia Carillon. Finally, with 18:01 left in regulation. Laundry a lammed home a shot from close range to tie it up.
Plugging the Leak
It seemed that goal would open the flood-gates, but the Dartmouth defense refused to collapse. With just four minutes remaining, the Crimson had apparently broken through again as a Dartmouth fullback fouled by using her hands to block a soft shot by Lander aimed just under the crossbar. The referee, however, failed to call a penalty.
Three plays decided the game during overtime. Two were diving saves by goalie Ticknor. One, two minutes into the OT, robbed Laundry. The other, with two minutes left, blocked a blast by misleader Inga Larson.
The crusher came in between a goal by Dartmouth's Pam Talley at the 4.35 mark of extra play, nearly set up by a centering pass from forward Radack. The Green defense steadied after that, as Harvard saw its season mark fall to 5-2-2, while Dartmouth's reached 4-4.
The Crimson will try to get back on track. Wednesday when it travels to Storks. Conn to take on the UConn Huskers. The lineup will, however, have at least one hole Coach Scalier says first-strong Gaelic Janet Judge, injured in last week's 4-4 the with Boston College, may miss the rest of the season. Freshman Chris Labey, who played Saturday, will be starting in Judge's position.
THE NOTEBOOK: Laundry, a sophomore, has been the Crimson's leading scorer of late...She's scored 11 goals in her last five games...Harvard's records in the Ivies 2-1.