Women’s soccer will face Lafayette on Tuesday evening in the final contest at its makeshift home in Teaneck, New Jersey.
Natalie Neshat’s header in the 99th minute gave Columbia a 1-0 away victory over Penn in a hard-fought, overtime battle on Saturday. The first-place Lions (6-4-2, 3-0 Ivy) posted their fourth straight shutout against the Quakers, and are off to their best conference start in program history. With an eye on an Ivy League run, head coach Tracy Bartholomew plans to use this upcoming contest to shuffle the starting lineup and rest some starters.
“With these non-conference games, it’s a good way for the coaching staff to play some of the girls that haven’t gotten that many minutes this season,” Bartholomew said. “We can also try some new set pieces as well, and try out some new plays we’ve been working on.”
First-year defender Bailey Peacock is one player who might benefit from more minutes against the Leopards. Peacock, a Florida native, has appeared in nine of the team’s 12 games this fall, and is likely to be integral in the Light Blue’s long-term outlook.
But Lafayette (4-5-3, 0-0-1 Patriot), which lost to both Penn and Brown by one goal, will pose a legitimate challenge. The Leopards’ star forward, Melissa Lynskey, leads the team with seven goals and 15 points on the season, and will be a focal point in the Lions’ defensive preparations.
“We’ll, of course, watch some tape and try to think of ways to put the girls in the best position to play well and get the win,” Bartholomew said.
The two schools reopened play in 2013 after an 11-year hiatus. The Light Blue has won two of the last three meetings, and is looking to even the all-time series (2-3-0) at three games a piece.
Women’s soccer will take on Lafayette, with kickoff set for 7 p.m on Tuesday at FDU.