NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Yale women’s soccer coach Rudy Meredith always stresses the importance of scoring first. Saturday against Columbia, his team did it very quickly on Georgiana Wagemann’s goal just 48 seconds in.
That meant there was a lot of time to try and hold the lead. The Bulldogs nearly made the early goal stand, but Columbia’s Beverly Leon tied it midway through the second half, and it stayed that way on an overcast afternoon at Reese Stadium.
Columbia (6-8-1, 2-3-1 Ivy) had the better of the play for much of the game and finished with a 21-6 advantage in shots.
“We played well in moments,” Meredith said. “We need to change those moments of playing well into extended periods of time.”
The early goal was certainly a positive moment. Anne Song made a perfect cross to Wagemann who tapped it inside the near post. Lions’ goalkeeper Grace Redmon was injured on the play and had to leave the game. She was replaced by Gabby Dubick.
Midway through the first half, it looked like the Bulldogs would increase the lead. Dubick couldn’t control a cross and the ball came to a wide-open Kristen Forster, who got off a good shot, but Columbia defender Isabel King cleared it away just before it crossed the goal line.
“We’ve been snakebitten like that a lot this year,” Meredith said.
Still, Yale had the lead until Leon struck with a little over 20 minutes remaining. She took a pass from Erin Falk and from a tough angle fired a shot into the top corner.
The Bulldogs (7-7-1, 1-4-1 Ivy) had the best scoring chance in the remaining minutes. It came with about five minutes left when Frannie Coxe sent a beautiful pass into the box. A streaking Forster managed to get a piece of it to deflect it on goal, but Dubick smothered it to keep the score tied.
Columbia had four shots in overtime but none were particularly dangerous.
Yale is closes out the season with a pair of games against Brown. The first one is Thursday night at 7 p.m. in Providence and will be televised on the Fox Soccer Channel. The two teams then meet next Sunday in New Haven at 2 p.m.