Women’s soccer defeats Dartmouth 1–0, as Grossi makes Ivy League history| Oct 8, 2019
In its second match in Ivy League play this season, Princeton women’s soccer (4–4–2, 1–1–0 Ivy) came away with a dramatic 1–0 victory against Dartmouth, and senior goalkeeper Natalie Grossi set the Ivy League record with her 30th career shutout.
The joy the players felt was clear as they rushed onto the field after junior midfielder Olivia Kane’s 94th-minute header. The game could have easily left the Tigers feeling frustrated.
In many ways they were dominant, outshooting the Big Green 21–10 throughout the game. But converting chances against a stingy Dartmouth defense, which had only conceded four times in the last nine games, proved a tall order. As two opportunities — a free kick routine barely outside the penalty box ,which was snuffed out by the Dartmouth defense, and a cross by first-year midfielder Marissa Hart, which flew into the side netting — failed to come to fruition in the last 10 minutes of regulation, it felt as though the breakthrough might not come.
This feeling was further exacerbated by junior defender Tatum Gee’s rejected call for a penalty eight minutes before the end of regulation. The first minute of overtime proved no different, as a shot from an inviting cross by Kane was saved by the Dartmouth goalkeeper. In the 94th minute of action, however, Gee floated a cross towards the back post, which was headed home by Kane, ending the game and giving Princeton the victory.
Given the number of chances the Tigers had, head coach Sean Driscoll remarked, “There would be no justice had we not found a way to win that game.” Although admitting that finding the back of the net posed a challenge to the team, as it has all season, Driscoll commented that the game “was the best and most comprehensive performance we’ve had as a team this season.”
He added, “Ultimately it was an enormous game for us, and there’s no doubt this week is important to take confidence from this game.”
As well as being an important victory for Princeton, the game became a piece of Ivy League history, as Grossi kept her 30th career clean sheet, becoming the first keeper in Ivy League soccer history, men’s or women’s, to do so. Driscoll described Grossi as “the best goalkeeper I’ve seen … She is the standard.” He further characterized her as a “tremendous leader by example” and a “true professional.”
This game also represented a significant moment for Kane, who scored her first goal in over a year, having missed the previous season due to injury.
With this past win against Dartmouth, Driscoll maintains his undefeated record against The Big Green. Next in Ivy League play, the Tigers take on Brown in Providence on Saturday, Oct. 12.