Sunday, October 29, 2017

Cornell Big Red 1 at Princeton Tigers 2 (NCAA Soccer, Ivy League) - October 28, 2017

My wife is an art aficionado and I am always trying to find museums that might be close to a sporting venue I have yet to visit. Princeton University has a celebrated art museum and so I convinced her that a weekend trip to New Jersey was a great way to end October. For me, the attraction was Princeton soccer, one of several varsity squads in action on Saturday. I had already seen football, and the other games were in the afternoon, while soccer started at 5, allowing us to spend a full day at the museum.

The Tigers play at Myslik Field at Roberts Stadium, which is in the middle of all of the campus venues, with Hobey Baker Rink to the west and Princeton Stadium and Jadwin Gymnasium to the east. Admission is free: just walk right in and sit right down.

There are four rows of benches that go from the north end zone around the west side and into the south end zone. The top row has a supporting wall behind it so you have something to lean on. I expected about 100 fans, but with Cornell also playing football at 7 (they were also the opponents for field hockey and women's soccer), there were a lot of visiting supporters, with attendance coming in at a robust 564.

Above the south end zone is a small concession stand, which gets quite busy at halftime. As there are a few decent restaurants up on Nassau Street or on campus, better to eat at one of those before or after. This goes for any Princeton game, as food at all venues is quite limited.

There is also a small press box at midfield and you can go up the stairs there to take a look, though I did not bother. The corner has a few benches for disabled people and offers a unique view that is not available at most soccer pitches.

That's about it. They don't get much simpler than NCAA soccer venues. If you happen to be in Princeton and soccer is the only game in town, it is worth a couple of hours to check it out, if only to add Roberts Stadium to your venue count.

The Game

Cornell came in at 7-5-2 (2-1-1 Ivy) while Princeton was 3-6-4 (0-2-2). The Big Red scored first on a superb shot from Tommy Hansan (#13 above), who shocked keeper Jacob Schachner from 25 yards out in the 18th minute.

Princeton tied it just 8 minutes later when Matthew Mangini (#22 above) launched a free kick from the center circle and Harry Heffernan (with the ball above) ran in front of a defender and headed it over Mitchell Meyer to complete the alliterative addition to the scoresheet. Just over a quarter of an hour into the second half, Mangini sent a long ball in that Meyer chased, but Jeremy Colvin beat him to it and sent the ball into the yawning cage to give the Tigers their first lead. Cornell had chances to tie and even hit the post late in the contest, but could not equalize as Princeton held on for the 2-1 win.

A decent match that certainly was worth the price of admission. Obviously, NCAA soccer doesn't get the coverage that the other sports do, but I've always enjoyed the games I've attended and this one was no different. Highlights are available on the Princeton Athletics website.


I still have to see a hoops game here and hope to do so during this upcoming season.

After the game, we walked back to the Dinky train and passed Hobey Baker Rink. Inside, Holy Cross was practicing for their game the next day. They should have practiced harder as they lost 4-2.

Next Up

Belleville for the Senators this weekend, and then Detroit next weekend for Red Wings and Pistons. Check back for updates as always.



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