What started out as a rout ended up as a nail biter, as Cornell (9-4, 4-1 Ivy) narrowly defeated Colgate last night, 4-3, at Schoellkopf Field. It was a big day for freshman Alyssa DePaola, as she scored the game-winning goal for her team’s third consecutive match. Yesterday, she was also named the Ivy League Rookie of the Week and was added to the Player of the Week Honor Roll by womensfieldhockey.com.
The contest, the 34th such one between the two programs, was characterized by dramatic shifts in momentum. High on the Red’s priority list entering the game was controlling and maintaining the ball in Colgate’s end of the field. The team was able to do just that throughout most of the first half, as it held a 12-4 shot advantage during the frame.
Throughout the first 10 minutes of the game, Colgate (6-9, 1-2 Patriot) seemed to be on the offensive. Using good ball movement, the Red began to get more comfortable and gain momentum. Cornell’s ball control and possession finally materialized into a score 20 minutes into the game. Senior co-captain Natalie Serle received the ball off of a corner and sent a pass into the crease, which sophomore Lizzie Auer promptly placed into the back of the net.
Cornell would remain on the offensive, scoring twice more over the subsequent seven minutes. At the 23rd minute mark, freshman Mandy Malzberg would score unassisted off of a save by the Colgate goalie. Four minutes later, freshman Brenna Gulotta, after getting knocked to the turf, would get back up and score off of a pass from DePaola.
After Cornell jumped out to a 3-0 lead with eight minutes to go in the first half, Colgate began to whittle away the deficit, eventually pulling even 15 minutes into the second half.
“We had the game in hand and didn’t shut the door,” said Cornell head coach Donna Hornibrook. “We didn’t defend with the composure and discipline that we normally do, which is something we need to work on as we prepare for [our next game against] Brown.”
Over the course of the second half, Cornell had multiple scoring opportunities, especially when Colgate pushed its senior midfielder Dana Shaner up the field, but failed to capitalize on them. Shaner took 10 of the Raiders’ 14 shots on the day and scored the team’s first goal.
Three minutes after Colgate knotted the score, the Red regained the lead for good, as Gulotta and DePaola found themselves on a two-on-one opportunity deep in the Raiders’ zone. Gulotta took the first shot, but missed. DePaola was there to gather the rebound and push the ball past the goalie, for the eventual game-winner.
Colgate had several opportunities late in the game, but sophomore goalie Lizzie Goldblatt held firm in goal, making several key saves in the last five minutes of regulation.
“It was a bittersweet win, but allowing them to get back in the game when we had control made it a lot harder that it had to be,” Hornibrook said.
With the win, Cornell ties the team record for most wins in a season at nine. The Red will look to conclude its five-game homestand undefeated as it takes on Brown at noon on Sunday.
Archived article by Jon Hausner
Sun Staff Writer