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Saturday at 7 p.m., the Tigers will play at Roberts Stadium for the final time this season, welcoming Cornell to campus as Princeton aims for its first Ivy League win.
If you're attending: Lots 16, 20, 23, 32 and the parking garage, labeled on this map, will be available for spectator parking. Walk past the tennis courts to Roberts Stadium. Admission is free.
||Head to Head: Princeton vs. Cornell
|NCAA Second Round
||Goals Per Game
|Tyler Lussi (7)
||Caroline Growney (7)
|Darcy Hargadon (4-3-4 W-L-T, 1.28 GAA)
||Kelsey Tierney (4-5-0 W-L-T, 1.41 GAA)
||All-Time Record vs. Opponent
||Last Win vs. Opponent
The seniors: Princeton will recognize its five-member senior class prior to the game. The class includes a goalkeeper in Cecilia Di Caprio who had her first career start this season, a two-time captain midfielder who has been a four-year starter and a first-team All-Ivy League pick in Gabriella Guzman, a midfielder in Erika Hoglund who has made a career-high seven starts this season, a co-captain defender in Diane Metcalf-Leggette who has started at least 14 games in each of the last two seasons, and a fellow defender in Kacie Kergides who has started at least 11 games in three of her four seasons.
On Cornell: The Big Red have hit a three-game skid on the way to Princeton after starting 7-3-1. While all three of those defeats were in Ivy play, the last two were by one goal to Yale and Brown, including a double-OT loss to the Bears in Ithaca last weekend. Even so, Cornell has already won its most games since 2005, when it finished 7-7-1. One-third of Cornell's 21 goals have come from Caroline Growney (seven), and Kelsey Tierney (4-5, 1.41 GAA) has played the whole of all five of the Big Red's Ivy League games while splitting time with Tori Christ.
On the series: Annually, Princeton puts on the line one of the most impressive streaks against any Ivy opponent in any sport when it faces Cornell. The Tigers haven't lost to the Big Red since 1995, a streak of 17 wins. Three of the last four wins, however, have come by one goal, including two in overtime in 2009 and 2010. While the Tigers won the first three in the series from 1980-82 and the last 17 from 1996 forward, Cornell had a run of 7-2-4 against the Tigers from 1983-95.
OT Tigers: Princeton has played five overtime games this season, tying four and losing one. It's the most overtime games in a season for Princeton since 2009, when the team played a program-record six OT games.
Home field advantage: The last time Cornell beat Princeton, it was at Lourie-Love Field in 1995 in Julie Shackford's first season as the team's head coach. Since then, Princeton has won eight in a row in Princeton over the Big Red, and the team's all-time record on campus against Cornell is 10-3-3.
Around the Ivy League: Harvard can seal the deal with a win Saturday over Dartmouth, entering the weekend with 15 points and a five-point cushion over Penn with six points still on the table for each team. Penn (10 points) and Dartmouth (nine) are the only teams mathematically alive for the Ivy title. For the NCAA berth, Penn needs to win both of its last games and for Harvard to lose out, as the Quakers lost head-to-head to Harvard in what would be the NCAA tiebreaker. Two Penn wins and a Harvard tie and loss would still give Penn a share of the Ivy title. Dartmouth needs to win each of its last two games, have Penn not win out, and have Harvard lose out to get a share of the Ivy title and the NCAA berth.
League-leading Tigers: Tyler Lussi co-leads the Ivy with four other players with three game-winning goals as the only Tiger to top a league statistical list.
League-leading Red: Dempsey Banks is one of five Ivy Leaguers with six assists as the only Big Red player to lead the league in a statistical category.
Last meeting: Princeton throttled Cornell 5-1 in Ithaca in one of eight games in the series to be decided by at least four goals. Princeton is 6-2 in those games. Lynessa McGee and Lauren Lazo had two goals apiece, while Jessica Haley had what became the game-winning goal after Cornell tacked on the game's final marker in the 72nd minute from Jenna Cantor. Tori Christ started the game in goal for Cornell and allowed the five Princeton goals in her 55 minutes, leaving the game following Lazo's second and Princeton's final goal.
Common foes: Outside of Ivy League play, Princeton and Cornell have just one common opponent, Colgate. Princeton defeated Cornell's fellow upstate New Yorkers 3-1 last time out, while the Red fell to the Raiders 3-0 in Ithaca back on Sept. 8. Among Ivy teams, Princeton and Cornell have both faced Columbia, Harvard, Yale and Brown. Both teams were tripped up by Harvard, Yale and Brown, while the Red beat Columbia and the Tigers tied the Lions.
Tyler Lussi scored her seventh goal Tuesday night at Colgate, giving her the most for a Princeton freshman in nine years, since Diana Matheson '08 had seven in 2004. The Princeton freshman scoring record is 13 by Sue Mooney '85 in 1981. If Lussi ends the season as the team's leading scorer, she'd be the first Tiger freshman to lead the team in scoring since Jen Hoy '13 (three goals) in 2009.
Rookies: Freshman goalkeeper Hannah Winner got her first collegiate start against Colgate three days after making her debut against Harvard, making it seven of the nine total freshmen who have seen action over Princeton's first 15 games. Three of those, including Tyler Lussi, Jesse McDonough and Fiona McKenna, have played in all 15 games. McKenna is the only one to have started all 15 and is one of two players in any class to have started all 15 games thus far, along with Gabrielle Ragazzo.
The coach: Julie Shackford is in her 19th season leading Princeton and has 195 wins as the Tigers' coach. Princeton has played in eight NCAA tournaments under Shackford, who, in addition to being the winningest soccer coach in Princeton history on the men's or women's side, is the third-longest tenured coach in an Ivy League where long tenures are more rule than exception. Only Brown's Phil Pincince (37th season) and Columbia's Kevin McCarthy (20th season) have been at their posts longer among active Ivy women's soccer coaches, and Yale's Rudy Meredith is also in his 19th season.
Going dancing: Princeton advanced to the NCAA tournament last season for the eighth time under head coach Julie Shackford and won a postseason game away from Princeton for the first time in program history. The Tigers won at West Virginia, beating the Mountaineers 2-1 for their first NCAA tournament victory since 2004.
Between the posts: Last Saturday at Harvard, rookie Hannah Winner became the third Tiger to play in goal this season, joining senior Cecilia Di Caprio and junior Darcy Hargadon. None was a regular starter at Princeton prior to this season. Hargadon has started 11 games and had five shutouts, while Di Caprio has started three games, against Fordham, Dartmouth and Harvard, while also subbing in against Brown. Winner had her first career start last time out against Colgate.
Up next: Princeton will wrap the 2013 campaign next Friday night at Penn with a 6 p.m. start. The Quakers will need help from Dartmouth Saturday at Harvard, as well as a win over Brown, to make the game meaningful for them in the Ivy race, as Penn is Harvard's closest pursuer for the Ivy title.