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In its second Ivy League game of the season, Harvard (3-3, 1-1 Ivy) fell to No. 13 Princeton (6-1, 2-0), 17-12, on Saturday afternoon in Princeton, NJ. Despite an even score at halftime, 6-6, the Tigers managed to outscore the Crimson by a margin of five in the second half.
Although the teams were neck-and-neck during the opening frame, Princeton doubled Harvard in shots (18-9) and groundballs (10-4) in the second period. The Tigers also edged out the Crimson in draw controls after halftime, 10-8.
“In the second half, we really couldn’t get a draw,” said junior co-captain and defender Tory Waldstein. “So they had the ball for most of the half, which made it really hard for us to gather ourselves. They went on a run, and we just weren’t able to respond.”
The Harvard offense tallied six goals per half. Freshman midfielder Julia Glynn led the Crimson with five goals, four of which were unassisted. Glynn registered the first goal for Harvard in each period and also forced a Tigers turnover. Sophomore attack Marisa Romeo had four goals of her own and chipped in two ground balls and one caused turnover for the Crimson.
Only four of Harvard’s 12 goals were assisted. Sophomore attack Megan Hennessey tallied a game-high three assists, while Romeo notched the fourth.
“Offensively, we had some impressive individual efforts,” said junior co-captain and midfielder Audrey Todd. “But, on the whole, we struggled to finish our shots and we didn’t consistently play as a cohesive unit. At the end of the day, that cost us the game.”
Princeton benefited from a second period scoring surge, notably a five-goal streak beginning in the 38th minute of the contest. The Tigers capitalized on two man-up opportunities and even found the back of the net during a man-down situation. Sophomore midfielder Olivia Hompe led Princeton with five goals, four of which came from assists.
“This was a game we definitely would like to take back,” Waldstein said. “Defensively we just were not playing together, which is actually usually our strength … I think a lot of things didn’t go our way, and we got frustrated, which is one of the struggles of a young team.”
The Crimson executed nine of 11 clears and had nine turnovers. The three Harvard goalies together tallied only five saves, led by freshman goalie Meredith Brown with three.
“Obviously, everyone is really disappointed with the loss,” Todd said. “We all know that we are just as good a team as Princeton, and we simply didn’t play our best lacrosse on Saturday. Hopefully, we will have the opportunity to play them again in the Ivy tournament.”
All 16 of the Crimson’s points were contributed by underclassmen.
“Our team has a lot of strengths,” Waldstein said. “We have a lot of quickness and great team chemistry. Obviously we rely heavily on sophomores and freshmen, so we need to work on building leadership and poise that comes from experience. I think that weakness definitely showed against Princeton. Hopefully we will get another shot at them in the Ivy tournament.”
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