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Alex Maasry lost the ball, but Penn did not lose the game, tying Columbia 1-1. (Jennifer Jong/The Daily Pennsylvanian)

For over three years, the Penn men's soccer team has been chasing a fugitive. Like Harrison Ford -- and now, Tim Daly -- a victory over another Ivy League team has craftily eluded the clutches of its pursuer week after week. The Quakers haven't tasted Ancient Eight victory since September 13, 1997, when they toppled Harvard, 1-0 -- before Rudy Fuller became the Quakers' coach. Frustratingly for Penn, Saturday's game against Columbia did not prove to end the chase of its own little Dr. Richard Kimble. In a well-played game, which went into two 15-minute overtimes, Penn and Columbia played to a 1-1 tie. The tie brings the Quakers' record on the year to 5-5-1, and it ends Penn's five-game winning streak at Rhodes Field. The streak included the first four home games of this year and the final home game of the 1999 season, a 2-0 win over Stony Brook. That is not to say that the Quakers are disappointed with the outcome of the match. They might not be happy, but they are not disappointed. "I can't say anybody was happy coming away with a tie," said Penn goalkeeper Jeff Groeber, who finished the game with nine saves. "We felt we had our chances to win the game, but at the same time, I think everyone was pleased with the effort that we gave. We put a strong game together." Several positive things happened for Penn, including another goal from white-hot forward Billy Libby, who scored both Penn goals in a 3-2 loss to Philadelphia University last Wednesday. Fuller, however, was happy that his entire squad displayed vigilance consistently throughout the entire match -- the very thing he has been looking for all season. "[I liked] how we put together a complete game from start to finish without really having any extended lapses," Fuller said. "From the first whistle to the final whistle, we were really working hard." Fuller also said that he was happy that his charges were able to adjust to the positional curveball that the Lions had thrown them -- several of Columbia's players started in different positions than they had against their previous opponents. "Our guys were able to figure it out on the mental side of it," said Fuller, who added that Columbia most likely switched its lineup around to experiment with different combinations of players. "While the first 10 or 15 minutes were difficult trying to sort things out, after that point in the game, we were under control and had a good game." It was Columbia that drew first blood, as forward Leslie Fitzpatrick scored on a penalty kick in the 68th minute of play. "The ball was bounced around the box, and their forward dribbled through, and I think it was Henry [Chen] and Will Lee, two of our defenders, just pinched the kid off and won the ball from him," Jeff Groeber said of the play that led to the penalty kick. "The ref made a horrendous call, and I made sure to let him know how bad it was, and I think a lot of our guys on our team felt the same way." The Quakers were able to tie it up eight minutes later when Libby headed the ball into the net off of a Chen free kick. Chen was credited with the assist. "Libby's really been playing at a high level for the past two weeks," Fuller said. "He has four goals in the past three games. Without a doubt, Billy's game depends on how hard he's working. If he's putting in an honest day's effort, the goals will come for him. And that's what he's been doing. He's been working hard on both sides of the ball, and he's been finishing very well." Columbia, which outshot Penn 14-6, had several chances to win the game at the end of regulation and in the two overtimes, but could not seal the deal. Penn will face a solid Lehigh team today at 2:30 at Rhodes Field.

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