Oct. 5, 2008
SYRACUSE, N.Y. - No. 2 Syracuse, the last remaining unbeaten team in the country, had the best offense in the country entering Sunday's game against Yale. The Orange had racked up 60 goals in its first 11 games, including double-digit totals on two separate occasions. The Bulldogs clamped down defensively, limiting Syracuse to only three goals, but could not muster enough offense and fell 3-0.
So far this season the only team to hold Syracuse (12-0) to fewer than the three goals Yale allowed was No. 1 Maryland, which allowed two goals in a 2-1 Orange victory.
"We played a great game defensively," said Yale head coach Pam Stuper. "We stuck to our game plan as far as our outlets and the way we organized our press."
Yale (2-7) had to fend off 17 corners for the Orange, allowing only two goals on corners -- one from Martina Loncarica at 19:41 and one from Shannon Taylor at 23:43.
"Syracuse's corner unit is one of the most dangerous I've ever seen," said Stuper. "[Freshman midfielder] Dinah Landshut did a fantastic job on those. Syracuse had to try to find a way to deal with her."
The Bulldogs got 11 saves from sophomore goalkeeper Katie Bolling, who was making the third start of her career. Bolling finished a busy weekend with 24 total saves.
"Katie played well," said Stuper. "She made the simple saves and she made some good saves. She also made good clears. One of our goals was to limit the number of second chances Syracuse had. Between Katie and our defense, we got the ball out of there."
A goal by Nicole Nelson at 48:27 gave Syracuse a 3-0 lead, and for the game's final 21 minutes the Bulldogs shut the Orange down. Junior midfielder Katie Cantore had a defensive save to finish off the solid performance.
"Our young defensive backfield continues to come together," Stuper said. "[Freshman back] Erin Carter had a fabulous game. On attack, we had better combinations and organization, but against a good team like Syracuse you just don't get many chances."
Yale next faces No. 4 North Carolina in a neutral-site game at Boston College next Sunday.
report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity