Oct. 31, 2008
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Bulldogs play their final home game of the season on Saturday when Columbia visits Reese Stadium for a 7 p.m. kickoff. Yale's four seniors - Natalia Mann, Maggie Westfal, Emma Whitfield and Hayley Zevenbergen - will be honored prior to the start of the game. Fans can follow live stats from GameTracker.
Yale's Class of 2009 has combined to play in 261 career games, score 50 goals and most importantly help the Bulldogs win 42 games. During their careers, Yale set a school record for wins in a season, won an Ivy League title and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NCAA College Cup.
Mann has started all 68 games she has played in at Yale. This season she scored the game-winning goal on a penalty kick in an overtime victory against Central Connecticut and tallied an assist against Sacred Heart. As a junior, she was named second team All-Ivy after tying for the team lead in assists with four. In her rookie year, she was the only freshman to start all 20 games and earned honorable mention All-Ivy recognition. Her only goal of the season was a big one. It came against Duke in the second round of the NCAA College Cup and tied the score at 1-1 in a game Yale eventually won 2-1.
Westfal has 16 career assists, which is tied for the sixth most in school history. She also has scored 23 goals. This season she leads the team in goals with eight and in points with 24. She scored her first career hat trick against Sacred Heart en route to earning Ivy League Player of the Week honors. Last fall, she was a unanimous first team All-Ivy selection and was named to the All-Northeast Region first team. She finished second in the Ivy League in points with 24 and goals with 10. In 2006 she was named second team All-Ivy, and as a freshman, she was selected as the Ivy League Rookie of the Week after scoring the game-winning goal in Yale's victory over ACC power Maryland.
Whitfield has been one of the most prolific scorers in the Ivy League throughout her career. She is eighth all-time at Yale in assists with 14 and has 21 career goals. This year, she is second on the team in goals with six and third in points with 17. She scored the game-winning goal in Yale's Ivy League win at Cornell. As a junior, she tied for third on the team in goals despite being limited to only 10 games because of an injury. In 2006, she earned first team All-Ivy and second team Northeast Region honors after leading the team in goals, assists and points. She also enjoyed an outstanding rookie season, earning second team All-Ivy honors and earning a spot on the Northeast Region All- Freshman team. Her eight goals tied for third in the Ivy League.
Zevenbergen has been a key member of Yale's defense since the day she arrived in New Haven. She has started 48 games in her career. This season, she made her first career goal a big one. It was the game-winning goal in Yale's 1-0 victory over Big East foe St. John's. As a junior, she started the first 11 games before suffering an injury, and in 2006, she was only of only four players to start all 17 games. As a freshman, she made an immediate impact for the Bulldogs, starting 19 games. Her first career point was an assist in Yale's 3-0 victory over Central Connecticut in the first round of the NCAA College Cup.
Columbia (10-3-2) is very much alive in the race for the Ivy title. The Lions enter the game tied for second place with Princeton. Both teams have 10 points. Harvard (4-1) is first with 12 points. Columbia has outscored its opponents 36-11 and features one of the most dangerous players in the league in Sophie Reiser. She leads the team in goals (12) and points (33) and was named the Ivy Player of the Week on Monday after scoring three times in last week's win over Dartmouth.
Report filed by Tim Bennett, Yale Sports Publicity