Following a 1–0 loss to Ivy League rival Yale (4–4–1 overall, 1–0 Ivy League), Princeton (6–4 overall, 0–1 Ivy League) was looking to bounce back against Bucknell (5–5–1, 2–1 Patriot League). Dominating performances in the midfield, along with continued pressure on Bucknell’s defense, ensured the Tigers’ victory over the Bisons by a score of 2–0 on Tuesday.
Princeton opened the game in a 4–4–2 formation. Initially, Bucknell had pressured Princeton and gained momentum down the right wing of the field. However, due to incomplete final passes, the Bisons could not capitalize on their early scoring opportunities. Senior defender Kamryn Loustau was pivotal in preventing Bucknell from scoring, with key pressures and tackles early in the game.
In the 11th minute, sophomore midfielder Kate Toomey managed to score from a contested tap in on the far post of a corner kick.
For Toomey, this was no ordinary goal.
“I’m honestly super stoked about the goal, especially since it was my first as a Tiger,” Toomey told The Daily Princetonian. “We had been pressing a ton and creating numerous opportunities in the first half, and I knew a goal was coming.”
For first-year defender Caroline Kane, Toomey’s goal also marked Kane’s first career assist.
Princeton continued to dominate the match towards the end of the first half, with sophomore midfielder Lily Bryant and junior midfielder Jen Estes pressing the midfield. However, the Tigers were unable to find another successful scoring opportunity again in the first half.
The Tigers opened the second half just as dangerously as they ended the first. This time, they had even more impressive control in the midfield, which forced Bucknell to defend in their half for a majority of the game. Despite Princeton’s efforts, they could not score a second goal.
Princeton appeared dormant towards the end of the match, allowing Bucknell back into the contest. Through multiple set-pieces and sustained periods of possession, Bucknell looked poised to equalize before the end of the game. However, an unlucky touch by Bucknell’s defender Brooke Tracey gave first-year forward Pietra Tordin an opportunity to score. With seven minutes left to play, Tordin’s ball found the net, marking her fifth goal of the season.
Even with a win to add to their records, Toomey knows that there is still much work to be done.
“This week at practice, we’d worked a lot on our finishing when we’re in the 18 yard box, so I’m glad that both [Pietra] and I were able to put one away,” Toomey said.
Looking forward to upcoming matches, Toomey hopes to continue contributing as much as she can to Princeton’s success.
“I plan to keep my energy up both on and off the field and work even harder going into the rest of the Ivy season,” Toomey told the ‘Prince.’ “With that being said, I’m so excited for our first Ivy home game this upcoming weekend in the new stadium, and I know the rest of my teammates can say the same!”
The Tigers will host Dartmouth on Saturday, Oct. 1 for an Ivy League home opener at Roberts Stadium.
Brian Mhando is a contributor for the Sports and Podcast sections at the ‘Prince.’ He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Instagram @brianmhando.