For the Harvard women's soccer team, it could have been a satisfying finish to a good season.
After a disappointing start, Harvard rebounded to a 9-4-1 finish--its highest win total since 1984--including a 3-1 upset victory in its season finale against Dartmouth. The Crimson went 5-1-1 in Ivy play and finished third in the Ivy League.
But when it came to hopes of a berth in the regional championships, Harvard's returners were already looking to next year.
Enter the ECAC's.
In a somewhat improbable move, the ECAC extended the Crimson an invitation to compete in its postseason tournament.
Not only was the Crimson invited, but it was seeded second out of the six participating teams.
Is this heaven?
No, it's a long, weary road trip to tournament host top-seeded Cornell. But that's not the point.
It's postseason play, something Harvard hasn't seen since 1984.
"This is the gravy," Coach Tim Wheaton said. "This is the reward for having a great season. This is it."
"I'm ecstatic," Co-Captain Amy Weinstein said. "It's such a great opportunity for us."
New Hampshire, Rutgers, Mon-mouth and James Madison occupy the third through sixth spots in the tourney.
Not only is Harvard thrilled to be attending the tournament, but it has aspirations of winning the whole thing.
"I think our chances of winning are excellent," Assistant Coach Stacy Flionis said.
Coach Wheaton issued his standard disclaimer, but he sounded positive about his team's chances.