April 15, 2009

No. 14 Dartmouth Handles Harvard, Still in Ivy Race

from press release

HANOVER, N.H. - The 14th ranked Dartmouth women's lacrosse team built an early lead and never looked back, winning a midweek Ivy tilt over Harvard, 13-6.

Sophomore Kat Collins (Darien, Conn.) had a six-point day with three assists to go along with her three goals while classmate Greta Meyer (Denver, Colo.) popped in three goals of her own. Dartmouth (7-4, 4-1 Ivy) led Harvard (4-9, 1-4 Ivy) in most every statistical category including shots, 25 to 14, and ground balls, 23 to 12. It was truly a team effort, as every available Dartmouth player saw significant action in the win and eight players had a point.

With the win, Dartmouth remains in the Ivy League title picture. Penn (5-0) and Princeton (5-0) meet tonight at 7 p.m. in a critical showdown. The Big Green fell to the #2 Quakers in overtime last weekend but host the #7 Tigers this Saturday at 1 p.m.

It took a while for the offense to get going but Meyer put the Big Green on the board first with a free position goal at 24:29. The Crimson got it right back when Katie Doherty found Sara Flood to tie it up at 23:39.

Dartmouth buckled down and a Katherine Chiusano (Medford, N.J.) tally at 21:34 was the first of eight unanswered Big Green goals in a streak that would span both halves. Collins tallied her first goal after a Crimson turnover to make it 3-1 at 18:08 and Dartmouth never looked back. The defense smothered Harvard for the balance of the half, allowing just one shot attempt.

The offense slowed a bit for Dartmouth, which went nearly seven minutes before its next goal but it was worth it when junior Eliza Bennett (Darien, Conn.) slipped a nice pass to rookie Sarah Plumb (Wellesley, Mass.) for her 16th goal of the season at 11:49. Collins continued to involve herself, scoring her 30th of the season at 17:38 off a feed from Chiusano and providing a nifty assist to Meyer who made it 6-1 Dartmouth just before the half.

The Big Green picked up where it left off in the second with just 29 seconds separating goals from Bennett and Meyer, who gave their team an 8-1 lead with a full 28:41 to play. Rookie Kirsten Goldberg (Cockeysville, Md.) fed Bennett for her second goal of the day at 22:05, Dartmouth's eighth unanswered tally.

The Crimson finally stopped the bleeding when rookie Tyler Petropulos scored off a feed from Flood with 20:20 left in the game. The Big Greeen got it back quickly, however, when Abigail Holden (Alexandria, Va.) converted a free position goal at 17:06 for the 10-2 lead. Less than a minute later, Collins turned some heads on the next possession when she bowled through the defense, made a spin move and fired a rocket past Katherine Martino to go up 11-2.

After Harvard put its third goal on the board, Collins was the playmaker, providing the assists on back-to-back goals by Chiusano and junior Colleen Olsen (Avon, Conn.) to go up 13-3 at 12:01. It was a sweet one first goal of the season for Olsen, a defensive stalwart who led the Big Green with four ground balls and two caused turnovers - categories she owns on the season as well.

The teams traded empty possessions for much of the balance of the game and the Crimson managed three late goals, but the contest was well in hand for the Big Green, ultimately taking the 13-6 win. Dartmouth's defense contained Harvard's top scorers, Jess Halpern and Kaitlin Martin, holding both to just one goal each.

Bennett added a team-high three draw controls to her three points while Kelly Hopley (Denver, Colo.) had a productive day with four ground balls and a caused turnover on defense.

Junior goalie Julie Wadland (Andover, Mass.) made three saves and dropped her goals against average to just 5.15 in Ivy play and 8.38 overall. Classmate Chelsea Kirk (Hunt Valley, Md.), who recently returned from illness, made her first appearance of the season in goal.

#14 Dartmouth is back in action on Saturday when it hosts Ivy rival #7 Princeton at 1 p.m. at Scully-Fahey Field.

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