A difficult rebuilding season came to a close for the women’s soccer team on Saturday with a 3-1 loss to Ivy-rival Dartmouth (12-4-1, 6-1 Ivy). The Red (3-13-1, 1-6 Ivy) said farewell not just to the season, but to its seven seniors, who played their last game in the friendly confines of Berman Field.
“I’m really close with all the seniors, so it was sad to see them go. They have a lot of leadership in that class, and they are a very tight unit,” said junior midfielder Mariye Wick. “Even though it will be a big loss, we are moving in the right direction. I am sad to see them go and I really liked playing with them.”
For the Green, Saturday’s win was just another day at the office. Ranked No. 21 in the nation, Dartmouth secured a second place finish in the Ivy League and expects to earn an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament. Columbia (10-4-3, 6-0-1 Ivy) clinched its first-ever Ivy title with a 1-0 win over Harvard this past weekend.
“I didn’t think we played our best today, but I am happy that we got the win,” said Dartmouth head coach Angie Hind. “We are looking forward to what Monday [NCAA selections] will bring.”
Dartmouth took a 1-0 lead with just under five minutes to play in the first half. Senior Colleen Kelly dished the ball to classmate Emily Tracy, who roofed a shot out of sophomore keeper Taylor Hendren’s reach.
Cornell came out fighting for the equalizer in the second half, but Green keeper junior Amanda Webb was able to stifle the Red attack. Dartmouth doubled its lead at 59:10 when freshman Ali Hubbard crossed the ball to junior Monica Martin de Bustamante, who buried it past Hendren to take a 2-0 lead.
The Red was able to draw within one when, with just over 10 minutes to play, senior Alison McKeown scored on a penalty kick after a handball.
“At that point in the game we had a lot of momentum and Dartmouth was fouling a lot. I think it just shows we played tough for the entire game and never gave up. It was another heartbraking loss, but I think we finished strong,” Wick said.
Dartmouth stymied any hopes of late-game heroics on senior Megan Wijas’ goal just over three minutes later. The tally came on an own-goal, and the blow was too much for the Red to overcome.
“It was a hard season and I don’t think things went as well we wanted them to. I think that as a whole, we have improved a lot from last year,” Wick said. “We played a lot more as a team, improved our character and raised our level of play. It was a tough season, but I think were all happy with how we played overall.”