Yale Athletics

In their fourth straight contest without a win, the Yale Men’s soccer team (6–4–4, 1–3–1 Ivy) played to a 0–0 draw in New York City against the Columbia Lions (1–7–6, 0–1–4). 

Riding a three-game losing streak, the Bulldogs came into the Big Apple on Oct. 29 looking to change their fortunes against the bottom-tier Lions, who have just one win all season. Despite controlling possession for most of the game and generating seven shots on goal to Columbia’s three, the Blue and White failed to convert any of their chances. 

Head coach Kylie Stannard focused on the positives after the game. 

“We played well overall against Columbia,” Stannard wrote in an email to the News.  “We always knew they would be tough to break down… I think we deserved more from the performance but that is often how our sport can go. I was happy with the shutout but we were very unfortunate not to score, which changes the entire complexion of how the game plays out.”

Stannard emphasized that the team was working to create openings and chances to score, even hitting the crossbar twice and getting a ball cleared off the goal line. But the team’s efforts ultimately left them in a tie.

The result moved the Elis to second-to-last in the Ivy League standings, continuing their disastrous run in conference play. Yale’s October freefall is especially notable given their early season success, which included impressive performances against non-conference teams such as Duke and Marquette

Defender Jeremy Haddock ’23 agreed that the team has played down to its competition in the Ivy League. 

We were the favorites coming into a lot of those [Ivy League] games, and though performance qualities varied, I think we can all admit we didn’t play as well as we did against some of the bigger non-conference opponents,” Haddock said. 

The Elis recorded five shots on goal in the first half, all of which were saved by Lions goalkeeper Michael Collodi. 

In the second half, forward Paolo Carroll ’23 had the best scoring opportunity of the game, finding himself in open space inside the six-yard box, but his volley banged off the crossbar. Carroll, who started off the season with five goals in six games, has scored in just one of the Bulldogs last seven. 

Carroll’s poor form, as well as the loss of forward Kahveh Zahiroleslam ’24 to injury, may be a reason for Yale’s decline. 

Midfielder Max Rogers ’25, a Fordham transfer who has started in every game this season, continued to be a bright spot for the Blue and White, playing 86 minutes and generating three shots on goal. 

The Australian discussed his adjustment to the intensity of the Ivy League after the game. 

“Every game in the Ivy League is an absolute dogfight from minute one to minute ninety, and as such we have had to adjust the way we go about our business,” Rogers said. “On a personal note, the competitiveness of the conference has been a real eye-opener for me and provided me with some important lessons that I hope to take into the rest of this season and next year.”

Goalkeeper Elian Haddock ’23 recorded his third clean sheet of the season, making three saves.

While the Bulldogs will not achieve their preseason goals of winning the conference or qualifying for the NCAA tournament, they will still look to finish the season strong. The team will look to avoid finishing in last place as they head into their final two matchups against 15th-ranked Cornell and Brown. 

Given Yale’s tendency to play both up and down to their competition this season, they may be able to upset a Cornell team already looking towards the possibility of postseason play.

The Elis next fixture will be on Saturday, Nov. 5 as they welcome the Big Red to Reese Stadium on senior night.

Ben Raab covers faculty and academics at Yale and writes about the Yale men's basketball team. Originally from New York City, Ben is a sophomore in Pierson college pursuing a double major in history and political science.