PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania women’s soccer team got a goal from Megan York in the 57th minute of its match with Dartmouth on Saturday evening, and that proved to be enough as the Quakers defeated the Big Green, 1-0, in a game that was critical for both teams with regard to the Ivy League title race.
Harvard’s 3-1 victory earlier in the day had put the Crimson at 4-0-0 in league play. Penn and Dartmouth entered their match with matching 2-1-0 marks, and knew that a loss would greatly reduce its chances at the title.
It probably explained why the Big Green, as soon as the goal was scored, turned on the offensive pressure. However, hats go off once again to the Quaker back line of Caroline Dwyer, Haley Cooper, Lauren Hammond and Tahirih Nesmith. They, along with goalkeeper Kalijah Terilli, kept the Big Green off the board in posting their fifth straight clean sheet in a row and 10th this season. (An extra bow should go to Hammond, who blocked a point-blank Dartmouth shot on goal in the second half that Terilli was unlikely to get to.)
York’s goal came off a shot from Erin Mikolai, who might have been the best player on the field Saturday night. The sophomore fired a shot from the left edge of the box that Dartmouth goalkeeper Tatiana Saunders had to dive to her right to push wide. However, York was right there waiting for the ball, and she pushed high into the goal.
The win was Penn’s 10th in a row at home against Ivy League opposition, and put the Quakers alone in second place in the Ivies behind Harvard. Brown is third, at 2-1-1.
Penn has one final non-conference game this Tuesday at NJIT, then returns to Ivy play next Saturday when the Quakers host Yale at 5 p.m. That game will be the first half of a doubleheader at Rhodes Field, as the men host the Bulldogs at approximately 7:30 p.m.