Women’s Soccer Launches Home Slate against UNH

Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot
Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Harvard women's soccer returns to the friendly confines of Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium to open its home slate against New Hampshire on Wednesday, Sept. 11 at 7 p.m. The Crimson holds a 14-3-4 record since moving to Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium. Since 2005, Harvard has posted a 4-1-3 record in home openers.

Home Stretch

Friday's match against Providence College was moved from Glay Field and will now be played at Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium at 7 p.m. Harvard will now have four-straight home matches, including three over the next five days.


Harvard has won eight-straight against UNH, dating back to 2003. Overall, the Crimson holds a 20-2-3 all-time series record over the Wildcats. Over the last two seasons, Harvard has outscored New Hampshire by a 6-2 margin.

Last Time Out

Heading west for the first time since 2008, Harvard faced tough competition at the USF Tournament. Despite a late goal by sophomore Lauren Varela, the Crimson could not overcome No. 18/19 California, falling 2-1 on Friday night. A penalty kick in the 58th minute would be the difference against San Francisco, as the Dons escaped with a 1-0 win.  

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Fresh Faces

Harvard added nine standouts to the 2013 roster, a class that ranked No. 20 nationally according to All White Kit. Five freshmen - Lizzie Durack, Joan Fleischman, Bailey Gary, Midge Purce and Karly Zlatic - all saw their first collegiate action over the weekend, as Gary, Purce and Zlatic earned starts.

Scouting UNH (1-4-1)

The Wildcats own a 1-4-1 record, last falling to Massachusetts, 1-0, on Sunday. UNH is led by freshman Kirsten O'Neil with a goal and an assist for three points. Five different Wildcats have tallied at least a point. In net will be senior Erica Correa (1-3-1), who maintains a 1.77 goals against average with 20 saves. Sam Lopes was hired as the Wildcats new head coach on Feb. 12, 2013.    

Depth in Net

Three goalkeepers saw action over the weekend in San Francisco. Junior Bethany Kanten (0-1) earned the start against Cal, while classmate Cheta Emba was between the pipes to start against USF. Freshman Lizzie Durack – coming off an UEFA finals appearance with England's U19 team – played the second 45 minutes against the Dons.

Scoring Weapons Return

Harvard returns 20 letterwinners from a squad that went 9-5-3 overall a season ago. All five Crimson student-athletes that garnered all-conference status during the 2012 campaign return, including Meg Casscells-Hamby, who earned a spot on the first team. Erika Garcia, Kanten and Haley Washburn all received second team accolades.

Casscells-Hamby and senior captains Elizabeth Weisman and Peyton Johnson accounted for 45 percent of the scoring a season ago and will look to continue their offensive onslaught.

Looking Ahead

The Crimson plays three games in five days, hosting Providence on Friday, Sept. 13 before LIU Brooklyn heads to Cambridge on Sunday, Sept. 15. Game time is set for 7 p.m. Friday vs. PC. LIU and Harvard kick off at 12 noon on Sunday.

Pacing the Sideline

The fifth head coach of Harvard women's soccer, Ray Leone is in the midst of his seventh season in 2013. Leone and the Crimson posted its sixth-straight winning season in 2012 as Leone earned his 250th career win on Oct. 24, 2012 vs. Brown.