Without an Ivy win, Elis head to R.I.

Halfway through its Ivy League campaign, the men’s lacrosse team is still searching for a win.

Looking to climb out of the basement of the league, the Elis (4-3, 0-3 Ivy) will face off against Brown (5-3, 0-1) in Providence tomorrow. Although the Bears were the only team in the league that Yale bested in its 1-6 Ivy campaign last year, the Bulldogs will need to work hard to pull out a win and keep themselves out of a four-game Ivy slide that would be difficult to recover from.

“They are a quality Ivy League team,” defender Pat Grimm ’08 said. “It’s going to be a fight, so we have to be prepared and work hard.”

After dropping their first three league games to Penn, No. 1 Cornell and No. 7 Princeton, the Elis have little room for error as they head down the stretch. With only three Ancient Eight teams left on its schedule, the squad’s best hope is to finish at .500 in the league with three wins.

“It’s a little demoralizing because our goal was to win the title, but I think our team is going to still play hard for the rest of our Ivy League games,” attacker Mike Karwoski ’09 said.

The Elis’ luck may change against Brown, the only other winless team in the Ivy League. Yale has taken three of the last four meetings, and when the two squads met in New Haven last April, the Elis stormed to a 14-8 victory in the midst of rain, hail, sleet and snow. Attacker Tyler Casertano ’08 had six goals and an assist in the effort, which was his best outing of the season.

This time around, both teams are on the rebound after tough losses to ranked teams last weekend. The Bears were downed by visiting No. 13 Notre Dame, 11-3, and the Elis dropped a close game to Princeton in New Haven.

And if these recent results are any indication, the Bulldogs may be positioned for success. The Brown offense — led by senior David Madeira and freshman Thomas Moldoon, who have a combined 29 goals — converted just three chances last weekend against the Fighting Irish. Meanwhile, the Eli defense had a superb showing against Princeton, holding the Tigers to just five goals, a season low output for the squad.

“Any time you keep a team like Princeton to five goals, the whole defense and the goalie are playing well,” captain Chris Kempner ’07 said.

The Elis will look to play with the same defensive tenacity and create more chances on offense this weekend, which would certainly give them the edge. They may also benefit from the change of location. The Bulldogs have gone 4-1 in away contests this season, with their sole loss coming in double overtime to Penn, while they have dropped both games at Reese Stadium.

“We are excited for the game,” Kempner said. “Brown is a good team this year and hopefully we’ll play with the same intensity and focus that we played with on Saturday. If we do that we’ll put ourselves in a good position to come back with a win.”

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