Sometimes all it takes is a familiar foe to get back on track.
Coming off of a tough loss in Cambridge, Mass. last week to nationally ranked Harvard (7-0-1, 1-0-0 Ivy), Penn women’s soccer took on Cornell University (2-6-2, 1-1-0) at Rhodes Field on Saturday. The Quakers have enjoyed their recent history against the Big Red, notching a record of 7-1-2 over their last 10 bouts with their rivals from upstate New York. They sought to continue the trend and get back in the winning column this weekend.
The Red and Blue got the jump on Cornell early in the game, with junior defender Emily Pringle scoring unassisted in the 12th minute. Crashing in from the left side of the pitch, she snuck the ball past Cornell’s senior goaltender, Miranda Iannone, into the bottom right corner of the net. It was Pringle's first career goal.
After the Quakers limited the Big Red for the rest of the first half, another first goal was notched. Sophomore forward Paige Kenton found pay dirt after fellow sophomore Ginger Fontenot banged a shot off the left post, tapping the ricochet in to put Penn up 2-0.
Thanks to solid defense and an efficient performance in goal by sophomore keeper Laurence Gladu, that score would hold for the remainder of the match. Cornell only managed one shot on goal out of their total nine attempts, a credit to the Penn defense’s ability to deny their opponents quality opportunities. Gladu easily stopped the one shot that did make it on target, a slow trickler off of a defensive deflection.
“It feels good to come back from Harvard and get a dub like this, and a shutout too,” Gladu said. “There’s always things to work on, but our back line today did great, and they kept the ball out of the middle.”
The win was the Quakers’ sixth of the season, bringing them to 6-2-2, and their first Ivy League victory of the year.
“Any win, especially in conference, is hard to get,” coach Casey Brown said. “It’s hard to win, it’s hard to score, and it’s hard to keep a clean sheet, and we did all three today. I’m very proud of the team’s performance and mentality. We were playing against a team that had a really contrasting style with ours, but I think we did a really good job of trying to nullify what they do and turn it into our game, and I thought, especially in the second half, that was really evident.”
Pringle echoed Brown's comments, emphasizing the team's strong play on both sides of the ball.
“It was really great to get a win at home,” Pringle said. “We love this team, and it was a great team win. We did great, we connected the ball really well. Had a little bit of a rough time, but being able to push through a game and get a win is always important. It takes good offense and good defense, and we had both today.”
The Quakers will hope to keep their momentum as Ivy League play continues, with matches at Columbia University (5-4-1, 0-2-0) and at home against Dartmouth College (4-4-1, 0-2-0) in the coming weeks.