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Senior Day Saturday as Yale Hosts No. 19 Dartmouth

Izzy Nixon. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Izzy Nixon. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Yale vs. No. 19 Dartmouth Saturday, 1:00 p.m.

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale women's lacrosse team will look to end the season on a high note while also paying tribute to the senior class Saturday as No. 19 Dartmouth visits Reese Stadium (1:00 p.m., ESPN+). The Big Green is currently tied for first in the Ivy League, seeking its first Ivy title since 2011.

Senior Day

Yale will pay tribute to the members of the senior class after Saturday's game:

  • Defender Keri Cavallo (Rockville Centre, N.Y.) joined the team her sophomore year and also plays soccer for Yale. She has appeared in seven career games for the lacrosse team and 65 career games for the soccer team.
  • Julia Sullivan (Manhasset, N.Y.) had her career end early due to medical reasons but has remained a valuable part of the team as manager, attending practices and games.
  • Attacker Addie Zinsner (Alexandria, Va.) has enjoyed the best season of her career this year, setting career highs in goals, assists and points.
  • Attacker Izzy Nixon (Greenwich, Conn.), elected captain by her teammates, has broken the Ivy League records for draw controls in a season and a career and tied the Ivy League record for draw controls in a game.

Last Time Out: Yale Falls to Then-No. 11 Princeton

Yale (6-8, 1-5 Ivy League) got four goals from sophomore midfielder Sam Higgins (Shoreham, N.Y.) but otherwise could not solve No. 11 Princeton's defense last Saturday at Reese Stadium, falling to the first-place Tigers 19-4. Senior attacker Izzy Nixon (Greenwich, Conn.) had a game-high seven draw controls, bringing her Ivy League single-season record to 149.

A Season for the Record Books Offensively

Yale has 179 goals for the season, 10th most in school history -- five away from ninth (2002) and eight away from eighth (2000). The school record is 205 goals, set in 2017.

The Bulldogs' 87 assists ranks fourth in school history -- nine away from third (1980). The school record is 113 assists, set in 1978.

Yale's 266 points are tied for sixth in school history -- six away from fifth (2004) and eight away from fourth (1978). The school record is 304, set in 2017.

Dramatic Offensive Improvement

Yale is averaging 12.79 goals per game this season -- an improvement of 20 percent compared to last season (10.67 goals per game). The Bulldogs have scored 17 or more goals in a game six times this season after reaching that number just once last season.

Accurate Bulldogs

The Bulldogs have dramatically improved their shooting percentage, going from .382 last season to .446 this season.

First-year midfielder Jill Gollob (McLean, Va.) leads Yale in shooting percentage (.522, 67 shots).

Captain Nixon Making History on the Draw

Senior attacker Izzy Nixon (Greenwich, Conn.), Yale's captain, has been posting some remarkable numbers in the draw control column. Her latest accomplishment came Apr. 13 at Columbia, when she set the Ivy League single-season draw controls record. Here is a look at some of her achievements:

  • Is second in the NCAA in draw controls per game (149 in 14 games, 10.64). That mark would rank third in NCAA history. Robert Morris' Jessica Karwacki set the record (12.71) in 2014.
  • Has 149 draw controls, besting the Ivy League record she set last season (130). On pace for 160 draw controls this season, which would tie for 13th in NCAA history.
  • Third in NCAA history in career draw controls per game (376 in 55 games, 6.8 per game). Leads all Ivy League players in that category -- second is Dartmouth midfielder Kathryn Giroux (385 in 60 games, 6.4 per game).
  • Broke the Ivy League career draw controls record, getting her 296th after the Bulldogs' 13th goal in the 17-7 win vs. Canisius Mar. 10. She broke the mark of 295 set by Nicole Daniggelis '16 and tied the previous weekend by Giroux.
  • Tied the Ivy League single-game record with 19 draw controls in Yale's 18-4 win vs. Hartford Feb. 26. The mark was first established by Giroux Mar. 21, 2018. The NCAA record is 24, set by Karwacki Feb. 28, 2015.
  • Has helped Yale as a team to eighth in the nation in draw control percentage (.601) and seventh in the nation in draw controls per game (16.43).

Nixon is a political science major in Pierson College. She is a graduate of Greenwich Academy.

Penoyer is Yale's Top Point Scorer

First-year attacker Olivia Penoyer (Manlius, N.Y.) leads Yale in points (33-20-53), averaging 3.79 points per game -- 10th in the Ivy League. She had a streak of eight straight multiple-point games that started with a season-high nine points (5-4-9) in the 17-10 win vs. Niagara Mar. 7.

Penoyer was named Ivy League Co-Offensive Player of the Week on Apr. 15. She had six goals and four assists in two games for the week.

A graduate of Christian Brothers Academy, Penoyer is in Saybrook College.

Markert Point Streak Ends at 24

Sophomore midfielder Olivia Markert (Centreville, Va.) saw her remarkable point streak come to an end last Saturday vs. then-No. 11 Princeton. She had scored at least one point in all 24 career games before being blanked by the Tigers. Still, she is second on the team in goals (32) and points (45) and is third in assists (13). She has more than doubled her point total from last season (21) and has 30 draw controls, second on the team.

Markert is in Pierson College and is a graduate of Westfield High School.

Higgins Ties Career High with Four-Goal Game

Sophomore midfielder Sam Higgins (Shoreham, N.Y.) tied her career high with four goals Saturday vs. No. 11 Princeton. Higgins had previously scored four in Yale's 19-17 win vs. Brown Mar. 17, 2018. She now has 13 goals and eight assists in the last six games, including a career-high six assists in the 17-11 win vs. UConn Apr. 10. That was the most assists in a game by a Yale player this season, besting her own mark of five (vs. Canisius Mar. 10). She is 10th in the Ivy League in assists per game (1.21).

Higgins also excels defensively, leading the Bulldogs in caused turnovers (19). She had nine vs. Niagara Mar. 7, the most by a Bulldog this season. Higgins has at least one ground ball in 13 of 14 games this season, with a high of eight in the 17-10 win vs. Niagara Mar. 7.

For the season Higgins has achieved career highs in caused turnovers, ground balls (26), goals (21), assists (20) and points (41). She has improved her shooting percentage from .412 last season to .500 this season.

A member of the National Honor Society at Shoreham-Wading River High School, Higgins is in Silliman College at Yale.

Gollob Leads in Goals

First-year midfielder Jill Gollob (McLean, Va.) leads Yale in goals with 35, averaging 2.5 per game -- eighth in the Ivy League. She is five goals away from becoming the second Yale player to reach the 40 goal mark since 2010 (Tess McEvoy '17, 41 goals in 2017).

Gollob has seven hat tricks and a team single-game high of six goals (Mar. 10 in the 17-7 win vs. Canisius).

A graduate of Georgetown Visitation Prep, Gollob is in Ezra Stiles College.

Scouting Dartmouth

Dartmouth (10-4, 5-1 Ivy League) can clinch at least a share of the Ivy League title with a win Saturday. The Big Green and No. 10 Princeton are tied for first in the league with 5-1 records, and the Tigers play at Cornell Saturday at 3:00 p.m.  This would be Dartmouth's first Ivy title since 2011.

Dartmouth features one of the top offenses in the nation (15.86 goals per game, eighth). The Big Green ranks fourth in the nation in draw control percentage (.623), with midfielder Kathryn Giroux third nationally in draw controls per game (9.07). Dartmouth is second nationally in clearing percentage (.938).

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Report by Sam Rubin '95 (sam.rubin@yale.edu), Yale Sports Publicity