With the bulk of its non-conference slate complete, the Harvard men's soccer team turns its focus to Ivy League play as it welcomes archrival Yale to Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium for a 7 p.m. showdown. The contest represents the first home night game for the Crimson this season.
Follow From Home
For the first time in the history of the program, all of Harvard's home contests will be streamed online. Fans can access the video stream online at GoCrimson.com for a charge of $9.95 for a single game or $29.95 for the entire home schedule. Eric Steckling will provide the play-by-play for the streamed contests.
Harvard holds the all-time series lead with a 51-37-10 record in 98 career matchups with Yale. The teams first faced off in 1907 and the game ended in a 1-1 draw. Harvard has fared well against the Bulldogs in recent years, capturing five of the last six meetings. Last season in New Haven, Conn., the Crimson was unable to respond to a Bulldog tally, falling by a 1-0 score.
Last Time Out
Harvard faced some of its toughest competition of the season last weekend, flying to the west coast to take on Cal Poly and No. 3 UC Santa Barbara. The Crimson took an early lead against Cal Poly thanks to a stellar goal from senior forward Zack Wolfenzon, but a first-half red card forced Harvard to play down a man for the bulk of the game and allowed the Mustangs to net two second-half tallies for the 2-1 win.
The defense put forth an inspired performance against the No. 3 team in the nation UCSB, holding the potent offense to just one goal for just the second time this season. Freshman keeper Joe Festa amassed eight saves in the game while fellow rookie Jake Freeman led Harvard with a pair of shots.
Harvard opens Ivy play with Yale Saturday (Gil Talbot).
Scouting The Crimson
The five goals on the season for Harvard have come from five different players, with Wolfenzon becoming the latest to join the list. The senior forward also leads the team in shots with 16 while Freeman is close behind with 11. David Barna has the lone assist on the season for the Crimson, providing the helper on co-captain Scott Prozeller's goal against Southern Methodist.
Joe Festa and Evan Mendez have both seen significant time in net for Harvard and Festa offers the better goals-against average at 1.86. Mendez boasts a 1-2-1 record on the season in five games started.
Scouting The Bulldogs
Yale will see its first Ivy action of the season against the Crimson, and brings a 3-4-2 overall mark into Saturday's contest. The Bulldogs' last game came against Connecticut and the Huskies prevailed by a 2-0 score. Two of Yale's three victories this season have come via shutout.
Three players share the team lead in points as Scott Armbrust, Jenner Fox and Peter Jacobson have a goal and an assist each on the year. Conner Lachenbruch and Kevin Michalak have also scored a goal each on the season. Senior goalie Bobby Thalman has played all but 45 minutes this season and boasts a 0.89 goals against average in nine starts this year.
Harvard is back at it Tuesday, Oct. 2 when it welcomes local non-conference foe Boston College to Cambridge for a midweek matchup. The game against the Eagles is set to kickoff at 7 p.m.