The women’s lacrosse team made winning look easy this weekend, more than doubling Harvard’s offensive output on its way to another Ivy victory.
The No. 14 Bulldogs (7-3, 2-1 Ivy) cruised to a 14-6 win over Harvard (7-2, 1-1 Ivy) on Saturday at Johnson Field, getting points from five different players while holding the Crimson’s 11th-ranked offense to single-digit scoring for only the second time this season. The win extends the Elis’ undefeated streak to three games while putting the brakes on Harvard’s four-game roll.
“We were able to keep them from getting into a rhythm,” head coach Laura Field said after the game. “One of our goals was to dictate the flow of the game.”
In the opening period, the Bulldogs outpaced the Crimson on both ends of the field, racking up a 6-1 lead while limiting Harvard to just six shots. Lauren Taylor ’08, Linden Ellis ’09 and Jenn Warden ’09 contributed six consecutive goals before the Crimson even got on the scoreboard in the last few minutes of the half.
The Bulldog defense played a crucial role in containing the Harvard attack, which has been averaging 14 goals per game this season. Goalie Ellen Cameron ’08 only needed to make two saves in the first period to help preserve Yale’s lead.
“We knew that Harvard had a strong attack, but we knew what they were going to run,” defender Michele Fiorentino ’10 said. “All we had to do was play solid team defense.”
After the break, the Bulldogs quickly turned a 6-1 lead into a 9-1 lead with goals from Meredith Callahan ’08, Ellis and Taylor. Ellis finished the day with a career-high four goals, one of her best performances of the year.
“Linden was a constant threat on attack and was very successful with her drives and cuts,” captain Kat Peetz ’08 said.
After Taylor’s second tally with 26:33 left to play, the two teams traded goals for the remainder of the game, each putting away five on the way to a final score of 14-6. Warden added another pair of goals, and Callahan, Taylor and Peetz each chipped in for the Elis, while five different players scored for the Cantabs. Cameron picked up another six saves in goal, finishing the day with eight in total.
“Ellen had some huge saves throughout the game that kept our defense’s momentum going and left Harvard’s attack frustrated and defeated,” Peetz said.
The Bulldogs are now on a three-game winning streak, having outscored their opponents 41-17 in that stretch. At the beginning of the season, the squad slipped into a pattern of trailing early in the game and fighting its way back from behind.
But recently, the Elis have turned things around, jumping out to early leads in the past two contests and maintaining them for a full 60 minutes. As a result, they have been able to dictate the flow of the game more easily and give the bench additional playing time.
The Bulldogs return to Johnson Field on Wednesday afternoon to host Holy Cross (3-7) in a warmup contest for Saturday’s challenge, a meeting with No. 2 Princeton (7-0, 1-0) on the road. The currently undefeated Tigers took their Ivy opener against Cornell over the weekend and are one of the favorites to win the Ancient Eight crown this season — unless the Bulldogs have something to say about it.
“I think that the team has gained a great deal of confidence from our past three performances, which is certainly necessary to have in our preparation for Saturday’s game against Princeton,” Peetz said.