Sarah Finnemore has served as co-captain of the Ivy champion Crimson this season (Gil Talbot).
No. 16 Harvard (11-5, 6-0 Ivy) vs.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The No. 16 Harvard field hockey team (11-5, 6-0 Ivy) looks to put an exclamation point on the 2016 regular season this Saturday, hosting Columbia (8-8, 2-4 Ivy) for a 12 p.m. start. Prior to the game, Harvard will honor the class of 2017 as part of its Senior Day festivities and after the final horn it will be presented with the Ivy League trophy for winning the conference title outright.
Fans unable to make it to Berylson Field can watch each of the ceremonies and the game on the Ivy League Digital Network.
Last Time Out
Behind the first career hat trick from rookie Bente van Vlijmen, the Crimson toppled Dartmouth on the road last Saturday, 3-1. Harvard's win, coupled with Princeton's overtime loss at Cornell, secured the Ivy League championship outright for the Crimson. van Vlijmen's hat trick would garner her Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors, her third such award this season.
Ivy League Champions
Harvard is the Ivy League champion for just the fourth time in program history and first since 2004. This year's title is also just the second outright title for the Crimson, with the only other coming in 1990. In 1991, the conference title was a four-way split between Harvard, Brown, Cornell and Princeton and in 2004 the Crimson split it with Penn.
Harvard's four Ivy championships are tied for third-most in the conference with Brown and Dartmouth. It trails Princeton's 25 and Penn's eight. In winning this year's title outright, Harvard snapped Princeton's 11-year run of earning at least a share of the Ancient Eight crown.
In winning the Ivy League outright, Harvard has punched its ticket to the NCAA Tournament. This year will mark the fifth NCAA appearance for the Crimson, having competed in the 2000, 2002 and 2004 tournaments. Harvard will find out its fate for this year's tournament Sunday night via a selection show on NCAA.com at 10 p.m.
Previous NCAA Results
1991 - vs. Boston University - L, 3-0
2000 – at Wake Forest – L, 6-3
2002 – vs. Michigan State – L, 4-3
2004 – vs. Wake Forest – L, 7-1
Prior to Saturday's contest, Harvard will recognize the eight members of its senior class for their contributions over the last four years. The members of the class of 2017 have 38 wins during their career, the most for a graduating class in 10 years. Individually they have accounted for eight All-Ivy League honors. Sarah Finnemore and Kyla Cordrey have served as the captains of the team this year.
Over the course of the season, Harvard student-athletes have accumulated eight Ivy League weekly awards, including at least one each of the last six weeks. Bente van Vlijmen's hat trick last weekend at Dartmouth earned her Ivy League Rookie of the Week recognition for the third time this season (Sep. 26, Oct. 3, Oct. 31). Senior Marissa Balleza has received three Ivy League Player of the Week honors (Oct. 3, Oct. 17, Oct. 24), while sophomore goalkeeper Libby Manela has earned that award twice (Sep. 26, Oct. 10).
Dishing it Out
Junior Ellie Cookson has dished out eight assists this season, tying her for the Ivy League lead.
The Lions are an even 8-8 overall this season, but just 2-4 against the Ivy League, tied for sixth with Brown in the conference standings. Columbia was downed at Yale, 2-0, last Saturday, but bounced back with an 8-1 victory over LIU Brooklyn Sunday at home.
Senior Katie Ruesterholz paces the Lions offense, and is second in the conference, with 35 points. She is one shy of the conference lead with 14 goals. Fellow senior Kendall Kuntz has started every game in net for the Crimson, averaging a 3.17 goals-against mark and a .582 save percentage.
Ivy League Digital Network
The Ivy League Digital Network returns for a fourth season as the home for all live streaming and on-demand video content for each of the conference's eight institutions. Broadcast in full HD and featuring a live score bug and play-by-play and color commentary, the Ivy League Digital Network provides fans with unprecedented access to the Ancient Eight.
Multiple subscription options are available to fans, including school-specific and league-wide passes. The ILDN is also available on Apple TV and Roku. To learn more about the Ivy League Digital Network or to sign-up today, click here.