MEN’S LACROSSE: No. 11 Elis prepare for No. 4 Cornell
Following a 16–13 victory over No. 20 University of Denver, the Bulldogs will travel to Ithaca to face Cornell in their first Ivy game of the season.
Courtesy of David Schamis (schamisshots.com)
The No. 11 Bulldogs (3–1, 0–0 Ivy) will face No. 4 Cornell (5–0, 0–0) at Ithaca’s Schoellkopf Field at noon on Saturday for their first Ivy league game of their season.
Last week, the Elis earned their first road victory against the University of Denver, where the Yale men’s lacrosse team won 16–13, with attackman Matt Brandau ’23 tallying eight points over the course of the game.
“I was really impressed by Matt today while our team came together to make it a grind,” head coach Andy Shay said to Yale Athletics after the game. “That is what this program is based on and these guys are proving they can play well in those games.”
In their last meeting on May 3, 2019, Yale won 15–10 over the Big Red in New York City in the Ivy playoffs. Goalkeeper Jack Starr ’22 made 12 saves and the Eli defense held Cornell to only five goals over the first 49 minutes.
At the time, the Bulldogs were ranked No. 2 and Cornell was ranked No. 9, and the win gave the Elis an opportunity to rematch Penn for the championship and a bid to the 2019 NCAA Tournament.
“This will be the first time since 2019 that Yale lacrosse has played against another Ivy League school,” Brandau said.
The first time Yale played Cornell in lacrosse was in 1916, and since then, Cornell has led the series 52–28–1. Yale is currently on a two-game winning streak.
So far this season, the Big Red has gone undefeated, winning all five of their last games. These victories include games against Penn State — a team Yale recently fell to — and No. 5 Ohio State. In their most recent two games, the Big Red defeated the Nittany Lions and the Buckeyes 16–15 and 14–11, respectively.
“We can take some confidence in the outcome [against Ohio State] and know that we’re a pretty good team, but also know that we’ve got a lot to work on,” Cornell head coach Connor Buczek told the Cornell Daily Sun. “But the nice part and the thing that didn’t waver throughout the course of that week was the effort played, and that’s something we pride ourselves on at Cornell lacrosse.”
Goalkeeper Chayse Ierlan currently ranks in the top 20 nationally in goals against average with 10.20 and has had at least 10 saves in four consecutive games. Attackman CJ Kirst is the Big Red’s leading point getter, with 15 goals and nine assists, totalling for 24 points across five games.
Despite their strong start Cornell has had this season so far, the Blue and White are ready to take on their first Ivy opponent and continue their winning streak.
The Bulldogs are averaging 13.0 goals per game this season and have been 16–2 in Ivy League competition since their 2018 season.
“We are thrilled to get the chance to compete at this level again,” Brandau said. “The fact that Cornell is such a talented team adds to the excitement.”
The Elis will next face No. 3 Princeton on Saturday, March 26 back in New Haven.