April 25, 2003

W. Lacrosse Vies for NCAA Bid

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The No. 13 women’s lacrosse team (8-4, 3-3 Ivy) will try to earn itself an NCAA tournament bid when it faces the No. 12 Yale Bulldogs (10-3, 4-1) tomorrow in New Haven, Conn. This is perhaps the Red’s most important match of the season, since only two Ivy League squads have gone to the NCAA tournament in recent years. At this point, both Princeton and Yale have better records than Cornell.

“It’s crucial to win this game,” said head coach Jenny Graap ’86. “Right now, [Yale] is sitting ahead of us in the Ivy League and in the nation.”

The Red is currently coming off of a huge win against Brown this past weekend. Cornell will not be able to overcome Yale as easily, however. Yale has several standout players such as attackers Sarah Queener, Miles Whitman, and Katie Sargent. For example, in last season’s Cornell-Yale game, Sargent had five goals against the Red.

“We’re [going to look] to contain some of Yale’s leading scorers,” said Graap. “We’re looking to play good transition defense and not let them go on scoring binges.”

Despite being ranked near Princeton earlier in the season, the Red has suffered some costly losses. Prior to beating Brown last weekend, Cornell had lost three consecutive games. The Red now finds itself behind Yale in the rankings, most likely due to its very poor play against its Ivy rivals.

“Within the Ivy League we need to step it up,” explained Graap. “[Yale has] that huge, significant win against Princeton [earlier this season].”

If the Red hopes to win this match against the Bulldogs, the team must continue to get its scoring from a variety of sources. Senior attacker Sarah Averson has been on fire as of late, but nearly every squad has marked her closely and limited her opportunities. Fortunately for the Red, it has gotten contributions from freshman attacker Allison Schindler and sophomore attacker Lindsay Steinberg to balance the attack.

“We need to make sure that we have a lot of players taking the ball to the goal,” commented Graap. “We need to spread our attack out.”

The Red will face the Bulldogs on tomorrow at 1 p.m. at Johnson Field.

Archived article by Michael Pandolfini