Bulldogs Enjoy 32-5 Shot Advantage
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Yale field hockey team found a way to overcome some of the best goaltending in the country on Saturday -- and the Bulldogs did so decisively. Seven different players scored goals as Yale beat Cornell 7-2, scoring almost as many goals in one game as the Big Red had allowed in all seven of its previous games (10). The win was the most lopsided in the series in 30 years (Yale 10, Cornell 1 in 1981).
Cornell (3-5, 0-3 Ivy League) entered the week with the best combined save percentage in the country, as goalies Alex Botte and Carolyn Horner had stopped more than 85 percent of the shots they had faced. Botte's .829 save percentage individually placed her second in the NCAA.
But there was little those two could do when faced with the barrage of shots (32) the Bulldogs peppered them with Saturday. Botte started and made eight saves, allowing seven goals before Horner came on for the final 17:36 and made one save.
"Cornell's goaltending had been outstanding," Yale head coach Pam Stuper said. "We knew we had to create a lot of opportunities, move the goalie and keep pounding away. Alex Botte made some good saves, and she made some great saves."
Yale (4-4, 2-1 Ivy) began its offensive onslaught with a goal from senior forward Mia Rosati at 8:09, as she tied her career high with her sixth goal of the year. Senior midfielder Dinah Landshut assisted on the play. Yale then struck twice in a four-minute span to make the lead 3-0. The goals came from senior forward/midfielder Kirsten Krebs and senior back/midfielder Chelsey Locarno; both were assisted by sophomore midfielder/back Georgia Holland.
"Kirsten Krebs did a great job on the right side all day long, creating opportunities on the attack," said Stuper. "And Chelsey Locarno played an outstanding game defensively, getting some good restarts out of the backfield. Dinah and Georgia played very well in the midfield. Overall it was a great team effort."
Yale's attacking style kept Cornell from getting any offense going in the first half, and the Big Red did not get its first shot until nearly 29 minutes had elapsed. By halftime the Bulldogs had a 19-1 shot advantage.
"With our style of play and speed, we are able to be very aggressive," Stuper said. "We take chances rather than sitting back and just trying to hold a lead."
Despite the heavy edge in shots, disaster nearly struck for Yale less than three minutes into the second half. The Big Red scored twice in a span of 98 seconds, getting goals from forwards Brittany Thompson and Christine Hibler. Suddenly, Yale's lead was down to 3-2.
But it did not take long for Yale to re-establish control of the game. Junior forward Maddy Sharp's unassisted goal four minutes after Cornell's second tally started a run that saw the Bulldogs score four goals in slightly more than 10 minutes to put the game out of reach. Three of those came on penalty corners, off the sticks of three different players: senior back Taylor Sankovich, Holland and senior back Erin Carter, Yale's captain. Landshut and Krebs assisted on the first one, while sophomore forward Erica Borgo and sophomore forward/midfielder Emily Schuckert assisted on both of the last two.
"Cornell got the momentum when they scored a couple of goals right at the start of the second half," Stuper said. "But instead of getting back on our heels, we answered immediately and made up for that lapse."
With Columbia suffering its first league loss Saturday (3-2 in double overtime at Princeton), Yale is now in a tie for second in the league standings with Columbia, Harvard and Princeton. Dartmouth, which beat Penn 4-2 Saturday, is the league's only 3-0 team.
Yale hosts No. 4 UConn Sunday.
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity