NEW YORK – Beverly Leon scored her ninth goal of the season to cap a stellar career on Senior Day, but the Columbia women’s soccer team fell to Harvard, 2-1, Saturday evening.
Prior to the match, Columbia honored its seven seniors in a short ceremony. Among those honored were: Leon, Natalie Melo, Kimmy Bettinger, Shannon FitzPatrick, Maya Marder, Lainey Prioleau and Chelsea Ryan.
The Crimson and Lions traded shots in the second minute of the contest with Peyton Johnson recording the first for Harvard, while Beverly Leon registered the first shot on goal for Columbia. Harvard’s offense would then take over and break through with the game’s first goal in the 14th minute. Elizabeth Weisman was able to collect a loose ball inside the penalty and fire it into the back of the net to give Harvard a 1-0 advantage.
Columbia’s back line was able to lockdown the Harvard offense through the next 25 minutes, but the continued pressure by the Crimson led to a second tally in the 43rd minute. Meg Casscells-Hamby received a pass on the right side from Lauren Urke and following a few quick dribbles, she sent a shot towards the net from 35 yards away that sailed into the goal just inside the far post.
At halftime, Harvard held an 8-4 advantage in shots taken, while Columbia goalkeeper Grace Redmon made four saves.
The Lions were able to cut the deficit in half just five minutes into the second half on Leon’s goal. Columbia was awarded a penalty kick after a Crimson foul inside the box and Leon put the ball into the right side of the net for her career high ninth goal of the year.
Columbia continued to pressure throughout the second period, outshooting Harvard 9-1, but the Crimson backline kept the ball out of the back of the net and held on for the 2-1 victory, finishing Ivy League play undefeated.