Sept. 7, 2007
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - For the 10th straight year, the Bulldogs will host an in-season tournament, and once again a strong field is coming to Reese Stadium. Action begins on Friday when Dartmouth and Sacred Heart meet at 5 p.m. followed by Yale and Northwestern at 7:30 p.m. On Sunday, Dartmouth and Northwestern play at noon and state rivals Yale and Sacred Heart meet at 2:30 p.m.
Yale will be playing its season opener against Northwestern. The 2007 Bulldogs will be young -- there are only four seniors on the roster -- but talented. Senior Erik Geiger is a two-year starter in goal and was an honorable mention All-Ivy selection in 2005. Junior Markus Jackson has been a regular in the lineup in his first two years and should anchor the defense. Tyler Guse, an experienced midfielder, was an honorable mention All-Ivy selection in 2005 before being slowed by injuries last fall. The biggest obstacle facing coach Brian Tompkins' squad is replacing three seniors who accounted for 15 of the team's 23 goals last year.
The Wildcats are ranked 10th in the NSCAA national poll after opening their season with victories over Colgate and Bucknell. Carl Pett leads the team in scoring with two goals. Mark Blades, David Roth and Matt Eliason have also scored. Blades, a Big Ten All Freshman Team selection last year, is the younger brother of Yale student assistant coach Gavin Blades. Northwestern finished 2006 ranked eighth in the nation after advancing to the quarterfinals of the College Cup.
The Big Green opened its season with a heartbreaking 2-1 overtime loss to UMass on Monday. Craig Henderson scored the only goal for the Big Green. Dartmouth returns seven starters and 16 letterwinners from the 2006 squad that finished 6-8-3 overall and 3-3-1 in Ivy League play.
SCOUTING SACRED HEART
The Pioneers are 1-1 after falling to Providence in double overtime and beating Iona 3-1. Jesper Fredriksson scored two goals and Svetozar Gladic put the game away late with a penalty kick against Iona. Sacred Heart returns all 11 starters from last year's team that finished 7-10-1 overall. The Pioneers were picked to finish fourth in the Northeast Conference preseason poll.
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity