The Harvard men's soccer team suffered its fourth shutout loss of the season yesterday, dropping a 1-0 decision to UMass at wet and rainy Amherst, Mass.
The loss snapped a four-game Crimson winning streak and dropped the booters' record to 5-6-1 on the season. The Minutemen, meanwhile, improved their season mark to 15-6.
Since Harvard was already out of the NCAA tournament picture, and since UMass is not in the Ivy League, the Crimson played yesterday's game mostly for pride.
The hosts were ranked third in yesterday's New England poll while Harvard placed fourth. The Crimson had already lost to UConn, the top-ranked team (5-1) and to number two Boston University (1-0 in overtime).
The teams slip-slided their way to a scoreless first half in which UMass outshot the visitors 9-5. Harvard had perhaps the best scoring opportunity of the period when a Nikhil Singh shot hit the UMass crossbar late in the half.
But Singh's shot bounced wide and the period ended 0-0.
UMass tallied 12 minutes into the second half when Ferdinand Adoboe slid the rebound of a Matt Ginsburg save into the Harvard crease for the game's only score.
Harvard dominated most of the rest of the half, compiling a 14-5 shot advantage, but could not score. The Crimson attempted a furious rally in the game's final five minutes, but--although, it hit a half-dozen shots on goal in those minutes--couldn't score on the Minutemen, who had collapsed into a defensive zone.
Harvard hosts Penn (4-5-4 overall, 1-3-2 Ivy) this Saturday and then travels to Yale in two weeks.
THE NOTEBOOK: Harvard freshman Ramy Rajballie is tied for second place in Ivy League scoring with four goals for eight points... The complete New England Division 1 poll: 1. UConn (16-1-3 record, 50 pts); 2. Boston University (12-2-1, 45); 3. Mass (15-6-0, 35); 4. Harvard (5-6-1, 30); 5. Vermont (8-7-2, 24); 6. Providence (8-7-1, 21); 7. Holy Cross (10-6-2, 15).