The men’s soccer team finally remembered where the goal was.
After being shut out by Dartmouth and Boston College last week, the Elis (3-8, 2-1 Ivy) broke their two-game losing streak with a dynamic offensive performance against Cornell (1-9, 0-3 Ivy) Saturday in Ithaca. Midfielder Andrew Dealy ’05 and forward Alex Munns ’07 both scored as the Bulldogs defeated the Big Red, 2-1. The win was crucial for Yale, which split its first two Ivy League games and needed a win to remain in the running for a conference title.
“It was a must-win game,” Munns said. “Being 1-1 in the league, we needed a [positive] result. We couldn’t let the season get away from us.”
After an uneventful first half, the Elis came out of the locker room in top form. Dealy, who leads the Bulldogs in goals, opened the scoring at 57:32. The All-Ivy midfielder took on the Cornell defense single-handedly, beating players one-on-one before firing a shot into the upper corner of the net.
“Andrew’s goal was as good a goal as you’ll see in any college soccer game,” Yale head coach Brian Tompkins said. “It was a great individual effort.”
Less than two minutes later, the Elis grabbed a second goal. Munns fired a long ball to midfielder James Stewart ’07, who held on to the ball as Munns sprinted toward the goal. Stewart returned the ball to Munns, who redirected the ball past Cornell goalkeeper David Mahoney to put Yale ahead 2-0.
“Munns and Stewart did a great job of creating an opportunity and finishing it,” Tompkins said.
At 69:12, Cornell midfielder Steve Reuter put the Big Red on the scoreboard. Reuter blasted a high shot from 25 yards into the upper right corner of the net, just out of reach of Yale goalkeeper Dwayne Whylly ’08.
“The Cornell goal was basically unsaveable,” Tompkins said. “It was a great shot.”
Saturday night was Whylly’s first start in goal. The freshman had previously entered games only to relieve veteran keepers Geoff Hollington ’05 and Matt Aleksinas ’06. Because of a spectacular performance by the Yale defense, which kept the Big Red out of scoring position for the majority of the game, Whylly was not forced to make any saves. However, his presence and quickness off the goal line reinforced the defense.
“Our defense, especially our back four, kept [the Cornell] forwards in check,” Eli captain Ryan Raybould ’05 said. “It was great team defense all around.”
With just two minutes left in the game, Dealy collected his fifth yellow card of the season. As a result, he will be forced to sit out the Bulldogs’ next game Wednesday against Sacred Heart, but will return for Saturday’s contest with Pennsylvania.
“It was a strategic card,” Raybould said. “We want to make sure we have him for our Ivy games.”
This win was an important one for the Elis, who have been struggling on offense. Prior to Saturday’s contest, the Bulldogs posted just 10 goals in as many games, and were shut out four times.
“Getting a couple of great goals is very promising,” Raybould said. “It gives us confidence going into our next Ivy game.”