Rhodes' Huge Day Helps Yale to Victory Over Harvard

NEW HAVEN, Conn. Some players perform their best in rivalry games, when the stakes are high. Early indications are that Yale freshman midfielder Devon Rhodes is one of them. Rhodes scored eight goals -- one shy of the record for goals in an Ivy League game -- to lead Yale to a 17-13 win over Harvard Saturday afternoon at Reese Stadium.

That was the most goals in a game by a Yale player in 10 years, and the performance highlighted a win that boosts the Bulldogs' chances of making the inaugural Ivy League tournament.

Rhodes was just one of many contributors that made Saturday the best offensive day in the Bulldogs' two years under Anne Phillips, Yale's Joel E. Smilow, Class of 1954 Head Coach of Women's Lacrosse. Senior attacker Jenna Block chipped in one goal and five assists, while sophomore attacker Caroline Crow had a hat trick. Senior defender Michele Fiorentino led Yale defensively, causing three turnovers and adding three ground balls. She also had a pair of draw controls.

Yale (5-6, 2-2 Ivy League) never trailed in the game. Block got the scoring started, driving the crease and earning a free position shot that she buried at 27:21. After Harvard tied the game on a Melanie Baskind goal 90 seconds later, the Bulldogs quickly began taking control.

A free position goal by junior midfielder/defender Kaitlyn Flatley started a three-goal run that also included Block setting up Rhodes and senior attacker Jessica Sturgill. Yale's 4-1 lead caused Harvard to make a change in goal eight minutes in, substituting Kerry Clark for Katherine Martino.

Clark made a pair of saves right off the bat, and when Jen VanderMeulen scored at 17:15 to pull the Crimson within 4-2 it looked like Harvard might make a run. But freshman midfielder Kristen Chapman got the draw control and junior attacker Myra Trivellas set up Crow for a goal just 30 seconds later.

That prompted a Harvard timeout, but it was also the start of a remarkable nine-goal run for the Bulldogs that would spill over into the start of the second half. Rhodes accounted for four of those goals, while Sturgill and junior midfielder Logan Greer had one each.

Crow scored a pair in the final 97 seconds of the half to put an exclamation mark on the best 30 minutes of the season for the Bulldogs. In addition to outscoring Harvard 11-2, Yale was 9 for 9 on clears and did not have a single turnover. The Yale defense would wind up limiting VanderMeulen, who came in with 29 goals, to just one in the first 40 minutes of the game as the Bulldogs built up their big lead.

But Harvard (4-5, 1-3 Ivy League) regrouped shortly after Rhodes made it 13-2. Midfielder Danielle Tetreault's free position goal with 22:40 left started a four-goal run by the Crimson that cut Yale's lead to 13-6 in a span of less than six minutes. Senior defender Claire Eliasberg helped put an end to that run by causing a turnover after Harvard got the next draw control, but the Bulldogs started getting hit with yellow cards that took off four of the team's best defenders -- Eliasberg, Fiorentino, Flatley and junior defender Fielding Kidd -- in a span of just over six minutes.

The Bulldogs weathered that storm by getting three goals from Rhodes while Harvard scored three goals of its own between 9:29 and 4:39. Rhodes' sixth goal of the game came on a free position, and her seventh came after freshman defender Chloe Drimal got the draw control after a Harvard goal. Rhodes' eighth came after she got a draw control of her own and drove the field for a quick score.

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2010-04-04



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