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Field Hockey Blanks Holy Cross, 1-0, in 2012 Debut

The Crimson celebrate after Catriona McDonald provided the game-winning goal in a 1-0 win over Holy Cross Saturday (photo courtesy Justine Agaloos).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.Cynthia Tassopoulos made four saves in the cage and Catriona McDonald provided the lone score of the afternoon as the Harvard field hockey team opened the 2012 season with a 1-0 win over Holy Cross Saturday. With the victory, head coach Tjerk van Herwaarden picked up his first career win at the helm of the Crimson.

The Crusaders outshot Harvard, 3-2, in the first half, including two that were on target, but Tassopoulos denied both attempts. Neither of the Crimson's two shots were on goal during the first half and Holy Cross also held an advantage in penalty corners, 4-2, during the opening frame.

After the break, the Crimson offensive attack picked up, as Caitlin Rea and Sydney Jenkins each got shots off within 15 minutes of the start of the second half. With the score remaining tied after Rea's shot was saved and Jenkins' attempt went wide, senior captain Kim Goh turned the momentum with a defensive save in front of the Harvard goal. Holy Cross' Carly Grimaudo made a move on the right baseline to get past a pair of defenders and Tassopoulos, before Goh sent the ball out of the circle to end the Crusader's chance.

Two minutes after Goh's save, Harvard was awarded a penalty corner after a Holy Cross foul. Rea controlled the corner pass on the wing of the circle, fired into the middle, where McDonald deflected the ball into the upper right corner of the cage. The shot gave Holy Cross' goalie Kat Matchett no opportunity to make a save, as the Crimson gained a 1-0 advantage with 6:29 remaining in the contest.

The Crusaders could not muster another scoring threat in the final minutes with Harvard running out the clock. The shutout was Tassopoulos' third of her career and second consecutive against Holy Cross.

Harvard is back at Jordan Field Monday for a 2 p.m. game against Sacred Heart.

Game Notes
The Crimson moved to 26-11-2 all-time in season openers, including five straight victories … Harvard is now 13-1 all-time against Holy Cross and has defeated the Crusaders in six consecutive seasons … Cynthia Tassopoulos moves within 11 saves of Anya Cowan '00 for third-place in the Harvard record book.