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Call this afternoon's women's lacrosse game the calm before the storm.
Today at 3:30 p.m., Harvard will make the short trip over to Boston University's Nickerson Field and will take on the Terriers. Three days later, Harvard makes a much longer trip--to Princeton--and plays a much more difficult foe.
B.U., only one year old as a varsity program, got shelled by Villanova on Saturday, 17-2. Harvard, on the other hand, held its preseason No. 14 ranking with wins over Boston College on Wednesday (7-3) and UMass on Saturday (6-5).
The Crimson, in fact, was the only Ivy team to win any game until Yale defeated Hofstra on Monday.
An undefeated record won't mean much against No. 8 Princeton, who has had a somewhat rocky start to its season. The Tigers (0-2) have already fallen to No. 7 Georgetown, 8-7, and No. 2 Virginia, 10-6, and played No. 4 James Madison last night. Princeton might very well be winless when Harvard buses go down this weekend, and as the adage goes, the Crimson must beware of the wounded bear. Or Tiger, as the case may be.
The only other Ivy schools in action last week were Cornell and Brown, both 0-1. Columbia also played, losing twice, but it will not be a full Ivy League member until next season.
Unsurprisingly, Harvard cleaned up the league awards this past week. Somewhat ironically, junior point defender Holly Rogers was named the Offensive Player of the Week, as she tallied two goals early in the first half of the UMass win.
The Minutewoman didn't have anyone big enough to guard her well, so once the Crimson settled into a set offense, she was open twice in the scoring arc. Over the rest of the game, she stuck to defense, helping Harvard edge out the win.
Co-captain Daphne Clark, the other side of the Crimson's last line of defense, was awarded Defensive Player of the Week. The cover point defender also came up big against UMass, marking the left-handed Stephanie Walsh well, and made a big offensive play as well.
Midway through the second half, when Harvard was having its most trouble on the transition from defense to offense, Clark decided to take matters into her own hands, racing upfield on a fast break. Junior Honor MacNaughton, standing behind the goal, found her charging towards the crease for the Clark one-timer.
Clark and Rogers also cleaned up many ground balls in the two blustery games, totalling 21 between them.
Today, the Crimson will try to see if the offense can pick up more of the goal-scoring burden--the only attacker to have netted a goal so far has been MacNaughton with two.
Senior Liz Schoyer, the team's leading career scorer going into the season (17 goals, 15 assists), still has yet to score her first goal of the season.... Junior defender Keren Gudeman is thus far leading the Ivies in scoring with three goals and two assists.... Co-captain Shana Barghouti picked up her 200th career save on Saturday.
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