The women’s soccer team has won seven games and Laurel Karnes ’06 has scored the game-winning goal in four of them.
The Bulldog midfielder struck again Saturday afternoon against Cornell (7-3-2, 1-2-1 Ivy) in double overtime at Soccer-Lacrosse Stadium to get Yale (7-5-1, 1-2-1 Ivy) its first conference win of the season. The victory pulled Yale into a three-way tie for fifth place in the Ancient Eight with the Big Red and Penn (6-3-3, 1-2-1 Ivy).
At 103:44, team captain Lee Anne Jasper ’04 chipped the ball ahead to Karnes in the box, who acrobatically redirected the ball past Big Red goalkeeper Matlin Katrina.
“Lee Anne [Jasper’s] ball [came while] my body was in mid air, and I was there once again at the right place at the right time,” Karnes said.
Karnes leads the Elis in goals and scoring with seven and 17 respectively.
Yale snapped Cornell’s three-game unbeaten streak.
“It [was] a great game [and] I’m very pleased with my team,” Big Red head coach Berhane Andeberhan said. “All [the] credit to Yale, they played great as well.”
For the second consecutive game, the Bulldogs came back from a one-goal deficit to earn the win, turning things around in the second frame after a halftime adjustment.
“We weren’t doing enough up front [or] putting any pressure on their backs so we pushed three players up front in the second half and that changed the whole game,” Yale head coach Rudy Meredith said.
With Karnes moving up to the frontline from the midfield, the Bulldogs set the pace in the second half, outshooting Cornell 9-6 and earning six corner kicks to the Big Red’s zero.
“We just totally dominated the second half,” Karnes said.
It was the best overall game Yale has played all season, Meredith said.
Despite controlling the play in the second half, the Bulldogs were in danger of suffering another Ivy League loss, down 1-0 with just over 12 minutes left to play.
Big Red forward Shannon Fraser gave Cornell the lead at 36:04, heading in a Natalie Dew free kick from outside the box after Lindsey Weening ’06 committed a foul.
But, at 77:59, after narrow misses on quality chances for Yale, Weening tied the game at one, collecting a Jasper pass in the box and slipping it past Katrina for her first career goal.
Cornell had dropped nine around the box to weather the Yale onslaught, but that did not slow down the Eli offense.
“I made my run through the midfield and then Lee Anne [Jasper] just made a perfect ball and my defender slipped so I had an open goal,” Weening said. “I’m glad I finished it.”
Jasper’s two assists in the game were her team-leading seventh and eighth of the season and tied her for third in the conference.
“[Weening is] starting to play with a little bit more confidence,” Meredith said. “She’s been playing much better than she was earlier in the season. That’s really going to help us if she can continue to do that.”
Defensively, the Bulldogs rarely gave up scoring opportunities. Goalkeeper Sarah Walker ’05 made three saves in the game.
In the overtimes, Yale’s defense, led by midfielder Maureen Metzger ’05 and defender April Siuda ’06 completely shut down Cornell and did not allow any shots.
Yale’s last line of defense also kept Emily Knight, who is currently tied with Penn’s Katy Cross for the Ivy League lead in total points, off of the scoresheet.
After having difficulty performing well both offensively and defensively in the same game all season, on Saturday the Bulldogs were strong at both ends of the field.
“Both our offense and our defense stepped up this time,” Weening said. “Normally it’s either one or the other and we haven’t been clicking well. We finally all just wanted it together and that’s why we won.”
After six game homestand, the Elis go to Philadelphia Oct. 25 to face the Penn Quakers in another key game for the Bulldogs, who are trying to return to the NCAA tournament for the second year in a row.
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