October 15, 2008

Red leans on rookie goalkeeper Murphy’s 11 saves against Ivy foe

Print More

While on the road this weekend, the women’s soccer team fell to Harvard on Saturday, 3-0.
The Crimson, playing on its home turf, improved its record to 5-3-3 (2-1 Ivy League) with the win, while the loss dropped the Red’s record to 1-8-1 (0-3).
[img_assist|nid=32649|title=Stop in the name of love|desc=Freshman netminder Kelly Murphy made 11 saves in Saturday’s loss to Harvard at Ohiri Field in Cambridge.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
Cornell got off to a rough start in the first half — the team had an own goal in the 10th minute. A Cornell defender was trying to clear the ball from the side of the box, but the ball deflected off another Red player and into the net.
This goal gave the Crimson a 1-0 lead and was the only goal in the first half.
Although Cornell was trailing from early in the game, the team continued to keep its confidence up. Toward the end of the first half, junior Harvard goalkeeper Lauren Mann was able to stop several impressive shots on goal by the Red.
“I thought that we played really well on Saturday,” said junior defender Kala Neilson. “We started out really strong. It was unfortunate with the own goal, but we didn’t really let that affect us, and we still kept playing hard.”
Going into the second half of the game, the Red shifted its strategy to put more pressure on the Crimson defense.
Yet Harvard fought back even harder and scored two goals.
“In the second half, we tried to push numbers forward to try to get a goal, and usually when you do that you run the risk of being scored on, that’s just what happened,” Neilson said. “We took a chance trying to push people up to try to get the win but it didn’t work out.”
The Crimson’s first goal in the second half came from junior Christina Hagner, who scored with a header off a corner kick after an assist from freshman Melanie Baskind.
Just over a minute after upping its lead to 2-0, the Crimson quickly scored again. This time, sophomore Katherine Sheeleigh received a pass on the left from teammate Hagner.
While the Red fell behind with 11 shots on goal compared to the Crimson’s 20, Cornell’s goalie, freshman Kelly Murphy, almost doubled the Crimson’s save total.
In the 40th minute of the first half, Harvard freshman Patricia Yau had back-to-back chances at making a goal but was thwarted both times. Murphy stayed tough with 11 saves during the game, making eight of those saves during the second half.
“We actually played really well in the game,” Murphy said. “We just had a couple defensive breakdowns that were a little unfortunate. But other than that, we actually played better yesterday than I think we have all season.”
Although the Red came out of the game with a loss, the players thought that the way the team played was a step in the right direction.
“We played really well, we played really strong and it was definitely the most confident game for us so far this season,” Neilson said. “We’re really happy with what we did on the field, and we’re really excited about it, so we try to look at it in a positive way.”