Yale trailed Brown 5–2 almost ten minutes into the second half of the two teams’ game Wednesday afternoon. The Bears had led 4–2 at the half, only to widen their lead 1:38 into the second.
Then Yale’s offense came to life. Captain Caroline Crow ’12 scored a free position shot at 20:13, then sped past two defenders and fired a powerful shot low into the Brown net to make the score 5–4. Within the next two minutes, attacker Devon Rhodes ’13 and attacker Kerri Fleishhacker’s ’15 scored free-position goals of their own to make the score 6–5 and give Yale it would not relinquish.
The Elis scored twice more before Brown could muster a response and held on for a 9–6 victory over the Bears. The victory lifted Yale (2–4, 5–8) into sixth place in the Ivy League, while Brown (1–4, 6–6) dropped to seventh. Just three days after taking down Columbia 13–9 at Reese Stadium, Wednesday’s win gave Yale its first winning streak of the season. Crow led the way for the home team with five goals.
“It was a huge win and every player did so well,” Rhodes said.
The Bears (6–6, 1–4 Ivy) ended up scoring the game’s first two goals five minutes after taking the face-off. Then, only two minutes after the visitors initiated scoring, Yale midfielder Cathryn Avallone ’15 succeeded in scoring the first goal for the Bulldogs to level the game.
Head coach Anne Phillips said the first half was good, but the team struggled to win the draw.
Following Avallone’s lead, Crow scored another goal, but the Bears added two more of their own to make the score 4–2 heading into halftime.
In the second half, however, the Bulldogs fought back effectively.
“We successfully ran different offense against Brown in the second period, which hurt [Brown] a lot,” Phillips said.
After missing the draw, Yale gave up another goal at 28:23.
Hopeful that the Elis could come out on top, the Bulldogs’ supporters kept up the energy in the stands, and the team started to perform.
The Bulldogs fiercely retaliated by pouring in six goals until in the next fifteen minutes
Crow mounted a relentless offensive campaign and recorded a hat trick by 18:24 into the second half. After two minutes, Fleishhacker’s free position shot finally broke the tie and put Yale ahead 6–5.
The team did not stop its goal-scoring rally as Crow and Rhodes added a goal apiece, and Crow’s fifth goal of the game with eight seconds remaining sealed the match for the home team.
The Bulldogs effectively controlled the game in almost every aspect except face-offs and shots. Brown outshot Yale 28–19 and won 10 draws to Yale’s seven.
With 15 caused turnovers and 13 clears to Brown’s 10, the defense once again showed strength and did not leave any blind spots.
“We played as a unit today and had one of our best defensive games,” defender Kallie Parchman ’14 said.
She added that the team also improved its clears in the second half, which gave Yale’s offense opportunities to score.
Despite her position, Crow also contributed to defense. The captain helped the team demonstrate strong transitions and caused a turnover towards the end of the half. The Bulldogs dominated in ground balls (22–19), which provided them with more goal possessions and attacking opportunities.
“We had high ball possession, ate the clock and won,” Phillips said.
Goalkeeper Erin McMullan ’14 recorded 12 saves with the help of her fellow sophomore defenders.
“Erin McMullan played extremely well the whole game, but especially at the end of the game when she made some key stops in high-pressure situations,” Parchman said.
Phillips said the defense and McMullan’s saves allowed the offense to have time and to be on track, which pressured Brown.
The Bulldogs committed six fewer fouls than their opponents, although penalties have been an area with which the Elis have struggled in the past.
Phillips said the Brown game was Yale’s first comeback win, and it is a sign that the team is moving to the right direction.
Yale has scored 123 goals so far and has only two more matches remaining, one against Cornell and the other against Boston College. Although both matches are important, the Elis will be putting a heavier emphasis on the showdown against the Big Red because its outcome will play a part in determining Yale’s final Ivy standings.
“We want to take this huge game momentum to the next game,” Rhodes said.
After two home games, the Bulldogs will take to the road again when they take on Cornell in Ithaca, N.Y., on Saturday at noon.