NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The University of Pennsylvania women's soccer team tied Yale, 0-0, in a highly entertaining match Saturday night at Reese Stadium.
The Bulldogs --Ivy League champions a year ago -- outshot Penn 19-9, but both teams could have walked away from this one thinking they deserved the win.
Sara Rose was outstanding in the Quaker goal, coming up with nine saves and upsetting several other Bulldog opportunities. She has still not allowed a goal through 335 minutes as a collegian.
At the other end, Susan Starr had five stops including maybe the save of the match when she dove to her right and stopped a Natalie Capuano effortearly inthe second half.
"I was very proud of the way the kids played tonight," said head coach Darren Ambrose, whose team went for the second match without usual starters Rachel Fletcher and Michelle Drugan. "Our younger players really grew up tonight and figured out what it means to play in these types of matches."
Yale (6-6-2, 2-2-1) held the play early on and forced Rose to make saves on some point-blank efforts. However, Penn (7-4-2, 1-3-1) found its feet about midway through the first half and got some pressure on the Yale goal.
"To be honest, we played a little scared to start the match, like we did last weekend at Dartmouth," said Ambrose. "But we made an adjustment in our lineup and things just seemed to click from there."
The second half really saw the play pick up on both sides, resulting in a number of dramatic moments for both teams. Just two minutes into the stanza Capuanoreceived the ball from Nicki Whitealone in front of Starr, just 12 yards out. However, Capuano's shot was from her right foot -- she is a lefty -- and trickled slowly enough that Starr was able to dive and make the save before the ball got past her.
Just 10 minutes later, Yale nearly got the match's first goal when Mimi Macauley lofted a shot over Rose. The ball hit the crossbar, however, and then Maggie Westfal's rebound effort was snagged by Rose.
Yale had another opportunity in the 63rd minute when Crysti Howser headed a corner kick onto the foot of teammate Mary Kuder. Kuder's shot went right into Rose's body, and she held on.
In the 73rd minute, Jessica Fuccello was given a great opportunity by Molly Weir, but her shot was grabbed by Starr. Then Weir had an opportunity with just 16 seconds left, but again Starr was equal to the task.
In the overtime sessions, Yale had the better of the play but was unable to greatly test Rose. Starr, meanwhile, made a save on Capuano in the second extra session to keep the scoreless tie intact.
Penn is back in action Wednesday night at La Salle. Kickoff for that match has been moved back to 7:30 p.m., from its original time of 7 p.m.