Cameron Pollack / Sun Photography Editor

It's been tough sledding to start the season for the team, which now includes a loss in its Ivy League opener.

September 25, 2017

Women’s Soccer Comes Away From Weekend Games Winless, Drops League Opener

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The Cornell women’s soccer team took a brief hiatus from its non-conference schedule when it welcomed Columbia to Berman Field Friday night. While the league opener was a disappointment for the Red, the team went back to non-conference play, settling for a 0-0 tie against Fairleigh Dickson University.

While the past two years between Cornell and Columbia has seen the home team come away victorious, the Red (2-4-1, 0-1-0 Ivy) could not keep up with the trend this season, as it would be Columbia (5-4-1, 1-0-0 Ivy) that would come away with the win, 2-0.

The Red fell behind early and was stuck in a hole that it could not get out of. Both of the game’s goals were scored by Columbia in the first half, the first three minutes in and the second at 22 minutes.

Meghan Kennedy, junior goalkeeper, had eight saves throughout the game, although she said that the overall gameplay on Cornell’s part could have been tightened up.

“We were disappointed with both goals but remained energized throughout the game in order to continue fighting until the end,” she said. “I feel the team’s play progressively improved throughout the game but that we still need to work on our intensity from the beginning which we will continue to focus on.”

The first half saw Columbia take 12 shots, whereas the second half was cut down to only seven. Kennedy commented on the turnaround after the first half’s unfortunate outcome, saying that the team became “more disciplined defensively.”

After the loss to Columbia, Cornell saw the upcoming match with Farleigh Dickson University (2-7-2, 0-0-0 NEC) as “an opportunity to get away from the stress of Ivy League contest, but nonetheless an opportunity to fine tune our defensive efforts,” Kennedy said.

At that point, the team was in search of some positive momentum, as sophomore Chrissy Mayer, goalkeeper for that game, explained.

“We focused on recovering physically from a very tough game Friday night, and mentally prepared to tighten up defensively as well as generate more opportunities,” she said.

This was Mayer’s first collegiate start, and despite the nerves she may have had, she ended up shutting out any scoring opportunities the Knights had. Out of the 22 scoring attempts made by the opposing team, Mayer successfully saved the 13 ones that were on goal.

The two teams matched up evenly on both sides of the ball, and despite an overtime period, neither team was able to come out on top, ending the game with a score of 0-0.

“It was a huge team accomplishment to keep FDU scoreless throughout 110 minutes of play, especially on such a hot day and a fast turf surface,” Mayer said. “I was also very excited personally to get the shutout on my first start.”

The team is ready to showcase their potential and secure a win in its next Ivy League game when it travels to Penn on Friday.