The Crimson is looking for its fifth consecutive victory on Friday (Gil Talbot)
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Riding a four-game win streak after a perfect homestand over the last two weeks, the Harvard men's soccer team heads to Amherst to take on Massachusetts on Friday. The Crimson (4-3) and Minutemen (1-5) will do battle at 3 p.m. at Rudd Field.
Ivy League Digital Network
After an incredibly successful inaugural year that saw over 1,000 events streamed live, The Ivy League Digital Network has returned for 2014-15, providing fans with unprecedented coverage of the Ivy League.
Multiple subscription options are available to fans including school-specific and league-wide passes. To learn more about the Ivy League Digital Network or to sign-up today, click here.
Use the all new Social Stream on GoCrimson.com to stay connected with the Crimson on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube this year. The Social Stream brings the conversation from all three platforms into one convenient location, allowing fans of all Harvard Athletics teams to monitor the action in real time.
Last Time Out
The tail end of the four-game homestand was a hard-fought affair between Harvard and Northeastern on Tuesday night. After trailing 2-0 as late as the 74-minute mark, the Crimson stormed back to score three times over a 16-minute span to overcome the Huskies in thrilling fashion.
First Andrew Wheeler-Omiunu headed in a nifty ball to bring Harvard within one score. A few minutes later, Daniel Smith tied things up with yet another header, this time after Christian Sady lofted a lengthy pass up the center alley right to Smith's position. Finally, with just 43 seconds remaining, Andrew Chang one-touched a rocket from the 18 yard box to seal the deal over NU.
Spreading the Wealth
Harvard, now just one of three Ivy League teams above a .500 win percentage on the year at 4-3, owns the most dangerous Ancient Eight attack. After a slow start to the year – just two goals in the first three games – the Crimson has reeled off 13 marks in its last four. The club from Cambridge leads the League in shots (128), points (49), goals (15/2.14 per game) and assists (19/2.71 per game).
A total of 10 Crimson have found the back of the net this season, led by senior co-captain Kyle Henderson's three scores. Fellow captain Mark Ashby, Daniel Smith and Andrew Wheeler-Omiunu all have two scores apiece, while David Barna, Andrew Chang, Jake Freeman, Hiroki Kobayashi, Tim Schmoll and Oliver White round out the Harvard goal scorers.
A trio of freshmen have been crucial to the offensive attack in 2014. Sam Brown and Christian Sady lead the way with three assists each on the season – setting up set piece after set piece for Harvard in the midfield – while classmate Nate Devine has two assists on the year.
The Mendez Line
Junior keeper Evan Mendez has progressed this season after a tough go to open the year. Playing behind one of the better back lines in the Ivies, Mendez has seen his GAA dip to 1.59 (yielding just 11 scores). His 28 saves ranks second in the Ivy League, while his .718 save percentage is good for fourth.
The Minutemen are fresh off their first win of the year, coming against Fairfield in the home opener. After dropping its first five – against Utah Valley, San Jose State, Santa Clara, Cal Poly and Boston U – UMass returned home to take down the Stags, 2-1 last Friday.
UMass had a tough time on the west coast to open the year, scoring just two goals on the lengthy trip, but the Minutemen are led on the attack by Josh Schwartz and his two tallies. Mark Morris and Matt Keys have added in a goal apiece, while Like Pavone is the lone assist man on the team, setting up three scores.
Both Ryan Buckingham and Taylor Culp have seen time between the posts, but Buckingham owns more of the minutes. He's allowed 10 goals in five appearances, while making 18 saves, earning a 1-4 record.
After the road swing to Western Mass, the Crimson return home to start Ivy play as Yale comes to town on Oct. 4 at 7 p.m.