The Harvard men's soccer team traveled to UNLV over the weekend for a pair of games designed to prep the squad for its upcoming league matchup with Columbia.
Harvard lost to Fresno State, 3-1, but defeated UNLV, 2-0.
Against Fresno State, Harvard failed to maintain its intensity against a fierce Fresno State offense.
The Crimson started off in good shape. It led at the half, 1-0, on a penalty kick by junior forward Juan Betancourt, the leading scorer from last year's team.
But, Fresno State scored just two minutes into the second half, flustering some of the Crimson players.
Mental lapses in the second half enabled Fresno State to take the lead. Forced to play more aggressively on offense, Harvard was unable to prevent a breakaway goal toward the end of the game.
"By the last fifteen minues of the half, we had recovered, but the damage was done," Getman said.
There was no such lapse in the second game against UNLV.
Senior goalie Jamie Reilly made two outstanding saves as the two teams fought to a scoreless tie at the half.
Neither team could generate much offense. Harvard fired only two shots on net, while the Running Rebels managed only three.
The action picked up substantially in the second half as the two squads racked up 25 total shots on goal. But, it was not until the 70th minute that either team scored.
Harvard midfielder Alex Estevez tallied on an assist from junior linemate Jason Luzak to put the Crimson ahead, 1-0.
Harvard got a welcome gift from UNLV shortly thereafter.
While scuffling in front of their own net, the Running Rebels inadvertently knocked the ball past their goalie, giving Harvard a comfortable lead, 2-0, heading into the final minutes of the game.
"We were mentally ready to play that game, and we never lost our composure," Getman said. "Jamie [Reilly] kept us in the game with some great saves until we were able to score."
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