New Rochelle, N.Y. - For the first time under Tracey Bartholomew, the Columbia women’s soccer team opened the season with a a 4-0 victory over Iona. The Lions flourished on offense with scores from four different players and used a stifling defense to shutout the Gaels in their first road test.
The Lions were on an aggressive attack early to start the game dominating possession. With just under nine minutes of play, sophomore forward Emma Anderson chipped in the Lion’s first score of the season with a great kick pass the Iona keeper off the assist from senior defender Natalie Ambrose.
Goalkeeper Sophie Whitehouse made her first collegiate start in goal for Columbia and anchored a first-half defense the held the Gaels to just one shot on goal. With a 1-0 lead at the break, this contest appeared to mirror the Lions 2015 matchup with Iona.
However, Friday’s second half was no repeat of 2015 as the Columbia offense kicked into high gear. In her first collegiate game, Emily Koe found the back of the net in the 65th minute off a beautiful cross into the center of the box by Anderson. Madeline Linde finished off a lead pass from Mercedes Fissore-O’leary in the 75th minute as the co-captain earned her first score of her senior season.
Defense quickly became offense as Emily Johnson turned a steal into an assist as she found a streaking Holly Neshat on the right side of the box who chipped it past the Iona goalkeeper to give the Lions a 4-0 lead.
An elite Columbia defense came to play as well not giving up a score on only seven shots allowed. Whitehouse was outstanding with four saves, including a high leaping save to halt an Iona shot attempt flurry in the second period.
Up next, Columbia (1-0) will head to Hoftsra on Sunday, August 28 for a 1 pm match at University Stadium.