The road has been unkind to the women’s soccer team this year, but fortunately for the Red, it will have to play just one more game away from Ithaca.
Cornell (2-9-1, 1-3 Ivy) will play its final road game of the season on Sunday against Brown (7-3-3, 2-1-1 ).
The Red will bring its dismal 1-7 road record to Providence, R.I., in search of the upset. Brown is currently ranked No. 4 in the Northeast and should pose a stiff test for the Red.
“Were going to prepare for Brown the same way we prepared for Yale. We will just need to have all our facets of our game together.” said interim head coach Gretchen Zigante. “We have to control the pace and control the attacking rhythm. We have to be threatening the whole game, and can’t let up. We will be a little more direct and threatening.”
The Red can take comfort in the fact that it has performed well against tough competition. Last Saturday, in an impressive Homecoming Weekend performance, Cornell completed 3-1 upset over Yale — ranked No. 10 in the Northeast.
Brown, however, features an explosive attack led by senior Kathryn Moos. Moos is an offensive force and leads the Ivy League in goals (10) and points (24). With a hat-trick in the Bears’ recent 4-2 win over Rhode Island, Moos showed what she is capable of. Zigante, however, has supreme confidence in her defense.
“A lot of teams feature a very talented forward or midfielder or two, and Moos does that for Brown,” Zigante said. “I still have a lot of faith in our defense and our midfielders. I think we can handle her and shut her down. We do have to stay organized and aware. [Junior co-captain] Leslie Campbell still has not been beaten one-on-one this year, so we can rely on her back there.”
The Red will feature a new starting goalie in sophomore Taylor Hendren. Freshman starter Carlyn Swensen is out with a shoulder injury sustained against Buffalo. The team, however, is confident that Hendren can step right in and play well.
“Our backup goalies have done well. They all have some experience and have done well playing in the past,” said junior midfielder Mariye Wick. “Taylor did really well for us last year, and we are confident in all of our goalies, especially when we are playing good defense.”
Zigante and the team know, however, that the game will ultimately be determined by the Red’s offense.
If the Cornell plays like it did against Yale, an upset is not out of the question. Senior Caitlin Oliver and the Red attack will have to generate chances and pressure the Brown defense.
“I think if we play with as much intensity as we did against Yale, we’ll be fine,” Zigante said. “We need to get opportunities, finish opportunities, and never stop attacking. I think we are ready to play like that against Brown. I know they are physically capable; they just have to be mentally prepared.”