Maddie Earle scored in the first half for the Crimson (Mark Manela).
SYRACUSE, N.Y. – Freshman Maddie Earle scored in the first half and sophomore Libby Manela made five stops for the Crimson, but the No. 15 Harvard field hockey team (12-6, 7-0 Ivy) fell to No. 3 Syracuse (15-3), 5-1, in the first round of the 2016 NCAA field hockey tournament.
The early stages of the first half proved to be a close affair, as Harvard's press created a number of chances for its offense. The Orange took the initial lead 12 minutes in on a goal by Emma Lamison, but Harvard responded four minutes later.
Driving up the middle field, senior Marissa Balleza found Earle streaking up the left side. Earle carried the ball through the circle and ripped a shot inside the far post to knot the game at 1-1 in the 16th minute.
Syracuse, though, began to create some separation, opening up the field with long passes, which resulted in a number of quality chances and three more goals before the intermission. Emma Tufts scored the go-ahead Orange goal in the 24th minute, while Liz Sack scored twice in the 29th and 32nd minutes to extend the lead to 4-1.
Erin Gillingham tacked on Syracuse's fifth goal in the 49th minute, to close out the 5-1 victory on its home turf at J.S. Coyne Stadium.
Harvard's banner year comes to a close with a 12-6 record. The 12 wins tied the program-record, and it earned the fourth Ivy League title in program history.