The Crimson takes on a tough Beantown foe this week outside of Ivy League play. (Gil Talbot)
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Looking to continue its five-game unbeaten streak –during which the Crimson has not allowed a single goal – the Harvard women's soccer team (6-2-2, 1-0-1 Ivy) will get an out-of-conference test this week as crosstown foe Boston University (6-3-3, 2-0-2 Patriot) makes the short trek to Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium at 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Ivy League Digital Network
After an incredibly successful inaugural year that saw over 1,000 events streamed live, The Ivy League Digital Network has returned for 2014-15, providing fans with unprecedented coverage of the Ivy League.
Multiple subscription options are available to fans including school-specific and league-wide passes. To learn more about the Ivy League Digital Network or to sign-up today, click here.
Use the all new Social Stream on GoCrimson.com to stay connected with the Crimson on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube this year. The Social Stream brings the conversation from all three platforms into one convenient location, allowing fans of all Harvard Athletics teams to monitor the action in real time.
Last Time Out
The Crimson's unbeaten streak sits at five games, but Harvard has not scored a goal itself in the last two. After a thorough 3-0 win at Penn, the Crimson fought through a pair of grueling contests versus UMass and archrival Yale, both at home. Against the Minutewomen, Harvard outshot its Bay State opponent, 17-12, 6-1 on goal. In a very tactical 0-0 draw in the rain last Saturday, Harvard and Yale played to a very even 0-0 tie, each firing 14 shots through 110 minutes of action.
Along with the back line, which is skilled at stopping opponents before they get started, goalkeepers Lizzie Durack and Cheta Emba combined for four saves over the two draws. For her efforts between the post, Emba was most recently named to the Ivy League honor roll this week.
Among the Ivies
Defensively, the Crimson is allowing just 0.53 goals per contest, the best total in the League and 10th-best in the entire country. Along with the excellent play of the Harvard backs, keepers Cheta Emba and Lizzie Durack have combined for seven clean sheets, which comes out to an even 0.700 shutout-percentage; that number is tops among the Ancient Eight schools and a remarkable eighth in the nation.
Individually, Purce and company have excelled on the attack as well. Purce, who sits third in the League lead with four marks (0.44 per game), was named the Ivy League Player of the Week two weeks ago after her two-goal performance versus Penn. Emily Mosbacher has three scores, including her pair of goals against LIU-Brooklyn over a week ago. In total, the Crimson has scored 15 goals, the second most in the Ivy League this season behind Cornell's 17.
A few freshmen have made an impact as well among the youthful Crimson. Freshman Dani Stollar – who notched Harvard's first goal of 2014 in the 1-0 victory versus San Francisco – has three points this season, while fellow classmate Marie Becker has done a solid job on the back line in her debut season.
Scouting BU (6-3-3, 2-0-2)
The Terriers started the season strong, coming out of the gates with a 4-1 record, but have since gone 2-2-3 over the last six. BU has enjoyed wins over Boston College and the College of Charleston, while dropping decisions to San Francisco and a close call to South Carolina along the way. Most recently, in Patriot League play, BU has scored victories over Navy and Holy Cross, while drawing with Army and Lehigh.
Entering the Wednesday showdown, BU is led on the attack by a slew of Terriers, but none moreso than Jenna Fisher. The junior attacker has racked up a team-high five goals this season, three of them game winners, coming on just nine shots on goal.
Anna Cuffia and Jamie Turchi are next in line in the scoring column, each recording a pair of goals, while four more Terriers, Taylor Krebs, Rachel Blauner, Christina Wakefield and Katherin Lim, have all found the back of the net as well.
In goal, Alyssa Parisi takes the reigns, having started 10 games for the Terriers. She has allowed eight goals, while posting 21 saves to earn a 4-2-1 record during her senior campaign.
Following the midweek matinee, the Crimson will turn its attention back to the Ivy League as Harvard will host Cornell on Saturday, before traveling to Brown and Princeton in back-to-back weekends to close out the month of October.