Nov. 1, 2006
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Yale played a tough non-conference schedule this season with the idea of preparing for Ivy League play. Now, with the final game of the year Saturday at Brown (Noon), the Bulldogs have a chance to finish second in the Ancient Eight -- a standing they have achieved only twice in the last 26 years.
Yale (4-12, 3-3 Ivy) faces a tough challenge to achieve that second-place finish. Princeton, which has already clinched the league championship with a 6-0 record, must beat 4-2 Penn Friday night at Princeton to keep Yale's second-place hopes alive. Then, the Bulldogs must beat Brown (9-6, 3-3 Ivy), a team that has allowed only eight goals in six league games.
Yale fell to the Bears 2-1 last year, snapping a string of three straight Bulldog victories in the series. Brown scored the game-winner with just over 10 minutes left in the game. Four of the last five games between Yale and Brown have been decided by one goal.
The Bulldogs' four-goal output Saturday against Columbia tied for the team's best offensive performance of the year (Yale also scored four at Cornell). Senior midfielder Rachel Lentz (Short Hills, N.J.) had two of those goals, earning Ivy League Player of the Week honors. She leads the team in goals with seven, a career high. Junior forward/midfielder Harriet Thayer (Briarcliff, N.Y.) leads Yale in points with 17 (5-7-17), also a career high.
Brown forward Stacy Gugliotta leads the league in points (9-3-21), while goalkeeper Kristen Hodavance leads in goals-against average (1.44).
Yale senior goalkeeper Elizabeth Friedlander (Milwaukee, Wisc.) leads the league in saves (146).
Even if Penn beats Princeton Friday night to clinch second place, a fourth league win would still be meaningful for the Bulldogs. They have won four or more league games only three times in 27 years of Ivy play entering this season. That includes the two times Yale has finished second, 1998 and 2003 (both 5-2). Yale won its lone league championship in 1980 with a 4-0-2 mark.
report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity