Warhaftig’s Wonders Pave the Way

The Colgate women’s soccer team swept yet another weekend of Patriot League play to bolster its league record to 5-1, ranking the team second and guaranteeing a spot in the Patriot League Tournament. The victories also pushed the Raiders into ninth place in the regional rankings, up one spot from last week. In wins over Holy Cross and Army on Friday and Sunday, respectively, the Raiders outscored their opponents by a total of 6-1. They were led on offense by senior midfielder Carolyn Warhaftig and sophomore striker Franny Iacuzzi, each of whom had two-goal games.

First-year midfielder Brittany Putnam opened the scoring against Holy Cross with her second career goal after 40 minutes of scoreless play. The goal opened the floodgates for Colgate, as Iacuzzi scored consecutive goals less than 10 minutes apart. Sophomore Brittany Pearsall then put the game on ice with a goal in the closing minutes. Senior Luisa Miller played another strong game in net for Colgate, shutting out the Crusaders for 65 minutes before giving way to sophomore Carly Sousa.

Two days later, the Raiders faced off against Army, a team the Raiders played very evenly last season. The two teams played to two 1-1 ties last year, including the Patriot League semifinals, and once again the two teams found themselves tied at one goal apiece at the end of regulation this year. Warhaftig scored a goal 20 minutes into the game, but each team played strong defense and the score remained 1-0 until the last 15 minutes of play.

Army’s Delaney Brown scored a long goal to tie the game at one in the 77th minute, and neither team could muster a goal as regulation time ran out. With less than a minute to play in the first overtime, however, Warhaftig scored her second goal of the game on a header, putting an end to an intense game. With two goals and two assists against Holy Cross and Army, Warhaftig was honored with the Patriot League Offensive Player of the Week award.

“I am very pleased with both games, especially the win over Army, because it is a huge rivalry and we might have to turn around and play them again in the Patriot League playoffs,” head coach Kathy Brawn said. “We tied them twice last year, so it was mentally big to finally break the tie.”

The 5-1 record puts Colgate in a tie for first place in the Patriot League with Lehigh. The Mountain Hawks fell to second-place Army on Wednesday night and will play at Holy Cross on Sunday.

Brawn said that she and the team are paying attention to Lehigh’s games, since they will determine the location of the playoffs.

“I am definitely going to be watching the game,” Brawn said. “It is challenging to play at Holy Cross because their field is so small, so it could be a good game.”

The Mountain Hawks hold the tiebreaker after defeating the Raiders earlier in the season, however, and so Colgate will need another Lehigh loss to finish in first place. But more importantly, the Raiders need to take care of their own business in their season finale. The team plays American at Van Doren Field tomorrow night. Beyond the huge playoff implications, the game could hold emotional meaning for the strong senior core of the team.

“I am hoping to get a lot of people to come to the game, since it is our last home game of the season and, depending on how the Patriot league shapes up, it could be the last home game for the seniors,” Brawn said.