PHILADELPHIA – After opening Ivy League play with a loss to the defending champions (Harvard) and a tie with one of the last two unbeaten teams in the country (Cornell), the University of Pennsylvania women’s soccer team gets back into Ivy League play Friday night at Columbia. UPDATED: Because of bad weather in the New York City area, the Quakers and Lions will kick off at 8 p.m. in New York City.
Ivy League Digital Network
All Penn women’s soccer home matches, and most Ivy League road games, can be watched LIVE on the Ivy League Digital Network (ILDN)! This subscription-based service has packages for the year, the season, and even single games. There are also special packages for each of the eight Ivy institutions. Click here for more information!
Around The League
After Penn (0-1-1) and Columbia (1-1-0) open Ivy play on Friday, all six other teams are in action on Saturday. Two of the three unbeatens meet each other at 1 p.m., as Harvard (2-0-0) is at Cornell (1-0-1). At 3:30, Princeton (2-0-0) and Brown (0-1-1) meet in Providence, R.I. At 7 p.m., Dartmouth (0-1-1) and Yale (0-2-0) kick off in New Haven, Conn.
The Series with Columbia
The Quakers hold a 13-8-3 lead in the series, and have won four in a row over the Lions – all by shutout (1-0 each of the last three years). The success has been particularly noticeable in New York, where Penn is 7-2-1 in its last 10 trips to Columbia.
The Lions (5-5-0) opened Ivy League play with a 1-0 loss to Cornell, but turned around and beat Brown by that same score last weekend. Emma Anderson and Rachel Alexander (3) lead the Columbia offense, whiel Natalie Neshat and Caroline Militello have also scored this season. Two sophomores, Natalie Ambrose and Kerry Manion, were second-team All-Ivy picks a year ago as freshmen. Alison Spencer has eight starts in goal (0.95 GAA, .811 save percentage), while Gabby Dubick has two starts (0.47 GAA, .800 save percentage).
*Penn (4-3-3) fell in its most recent contest, a 1-0 decision to Lehigh Tuesday on a night when the Quakers outshot the Mountain Hawks 16-5.
*Penn had a 0-0 draw with Cornell last Friday night in its most recent Ivy League match, one that was played in weather conditions daunting enough to move the match from Rhodes Field (grass) to Penn Park (fieldturf). Heavy rains and high winds made it tough for both teams. Cornell had entered the match as one of just two unbeaten teams left at the NCAA Division I level; the other one is the current No. 1 team in the country, North Carolina.
*Penn has gone to overtime in three of its last five matches, and gone the distance in all three without settling matters.*Penn returned just four players who scored last season to this year’s roster. None of them have scored yet this season, but nine other players have already scored.
*Of the nine players who have scored, it was the first tally at Penn for seven of them. The only two whose goals weren’t their first were senior co-captain Erin Mikolai (Mount St. Mary’s) and classmate Shannon Hennessy (VCU). Of course, in Hennessy’s case it was her second collegiate goal -- the first came her sophomore year, in 2013.
*A caveat to the previous note is senior defender Paige Lombard; the senior co-captain scored in consecutive games, against Mount St. Mary’s and at Clemson. They were her first goals at Penn, but her third and fourth as a collegian -- she also scored twice at the University of Miami.
*Freshman Maddie Dawkins had Penn’s goal in its 1-0 win at USC Upstate on September 13. It was a just result for the Quakers, who outshot the Spartans 18-1 in the match.
*Senior goalkeeper Kalijah Terilli was upended and injured early at Clemson, which has left junior Carrie Crook to pick up the pieces -- which she has, posting shutouts in three of her first five collegiate starts after allowing just two goals (one on a PK) against the ranked Tigers.
*In her first career Ivy League start, Crook made a career-high nine saves against two-time defending champion Harvard.
*Freshman Kiera Towell made her collegiate debut against VCU, stepping on at halftime of a 1-1 match and preserving the draw for the Quakers.
*Sophomore Farah Otero-Amad had a goal and an assist in Penn’s win over Mount St. Mary’s, her first collegiate points.
*Sophomore Natasha Davenport and freshman Allie Trzaska -- who made her first collegiate start -- had the goals in the Quakers’ 2-1 win against previously unbeaten Temple.
*Penn opened its 2015 season -- and the Nicole Van Dyke coaching era -- with a 3-1 win over Seton Hall on August 30. It marked the fifth-straight year the Quakers have won their opener, and the sixth time in seven years.
*Freshman Sasha Stephens scored twice in her collegiate debut, notching Penn’s second and third goals last Sunday. That Monday, she was named the Ivy League Rookie of the Week.
*Sophomore transfer Lauren Petite also scored in her collegiate debut; she was on TCU’s roster last year but did not see any match action. Petite’s goal came less than four minutes into the contest.
*By calendar date, this year’s season opener was the earliest in program history -- in both 2007 and 2012 the Quakers opened the season on August 31. That 2007 game ended as a 1-0 win over Saint Louis, while the 2012 match was a 2-1 win over James Madison.
*The defense should once again be shored up by senior Caroline Dwyer. She was shut down after 11 matches last year due to injury, but as a sophomore she was Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year; first-team All-Ivy; first-team NSCAA All-Region; and third-team NSCAA All-America (just the second player in program history to earn NSCAA All-America recognition, after Katy Cross).
*Dwyer also is one of 30 candidates for the Senior CLASS Award this year. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, this national award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletes to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.