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The Dartmouth
May 26, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Women’s soccer has successful start as attention turns to upcoming Ivy League play

After seven games, the team is 4-2-1, with particularly impressive showings against Georgetown University and the University of Kansas. Ivy League play begins this weekend.

Hannah Curtin Photo

Hannah Curtin ’25 has been one of the Big Green’s best players so far this season. She was named the Ivy League Rookie of Week for the week of August 30.

The Dartmouth women’s soccer team opened its 2021 season on a hot streak, going unbeaten in its first five games. However, the Big Green has since lost its last two in hard-fought matches against Fairfield University and the University of Kansas. With nine days between contests, the team does have some time to shake off these close losses before beginning Ivy League play on September 25 at Brown University. 

Following Thursday night’s game, head coach Ron Rainey said that he remains confident in his squad despite the 2-1 loss.

“I thought this was a great game tonight,” Rainey said. “Both teams worked hard, and Kansas, as a Big 12 school, to come out here and give us an opportunity is really cool. I have a lot of respect for their program. I think that was our best effort offensively and defensively of the year, so I’m really proud of this group.”

One of the leaders of this year’s strong group is Allie Winstanley ’23, who has led the Big Green with an impressive series of performances that earned her Ivy League Player of the Week honors for the week of August 30. The forward scored or assisted on all five of Dartmouth’s goals in their two tilts that week and currently sits in fifth on the Ivy League leaderboard with 10 points.

“It’s exciting to get recognized,” Winstanley said. “But I also owe it to my teammates. This is a special group of girls this year. As we play more and more together, we get to know each other and how each other plays.”

Forward Hannah Curtin ’25 has made a strong first impression with the Big Green. The freshman shares the team lead with Winstanley in goals, three, and is just behind her in total points, with eight. Curtin won Ivy League Rookie of the Week honors concurrently with Winstanley’s accolade, capping a strong week for Dartmouth in which they defeated the College of the Holy Cross 3-2 and the University of Vermont 2-1. Like Winstanley, Curtin attributes a lot of her early success to her teammates.

“The team is very inviting all around. They make an effort to make us feel comfortable, which you can see on the field,” Curtin said. “I definitely wasn’t expecting the award, but was really honored to get it. It got me excited for the season as it was getting started and motivated me to keep improving.”

Goalie Charlotte Cyr ’23 has been effective in the face of pressure so far this season. She leads the Ivy League in saves per game with five, while playing the third-most minutes of any goalkeeper in the conference. 

Cyr shined in an impressive 1-1 draw against Georgetown University, a school that at the time ranked eighth in the nation. She saved nine shots over the course of 110 minutes, keeping Dartmouth in the game despite the Big Green getting outshot 6-1 in the first half. Dartmouth struck early in the second on a Winstanley goal off the crossbar assisted by Maddie Mills ’22, which proved to be pivotal in securing the tie. 

The highlight of Dartmouth’s young season came in a 2-1 double overtime victory over Sacred Heart University. The Big Green answered Sacred Heart’s 68th minute goal immediately with one of their own, when Dasa Hase ’25 scored with an assist from Michael Guptill ’22. Dartmouth applied pressure consistently throughout the overtime period but appeared heading for a draw as the night wore on. However, the Big Green’s points leaders delivered in the big spot. Winstanley threaded the needle to Curtin, who drove home the decisive goal with only two and a half minutes remaining.

“The whole team stormed the field,” Winstanley said. “It was such a fun moment. Hannah had fallen on the ground and we were all pig piling.”

For Curtin, her favorite moment this season was the experience of playing Georgetown in Washington, D.C.

“The [Georgetown] game was a great example of how it takes the whole team to do well,” Curtin said. “From energy on the bench to the strength of our defense, I think it was a testament to what we can do this season.”

Looking ahead, the Big Green have a full lineup of games in the next month, going up against conference rivals Brown, Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania and Yale University. Rainey aims to keep the team’s strong start going throughout the rest of this season, focusing on maintaining high energy and continuing to put in the work.

“We want the effort and energy we had [against Kansas] to be a trademark for our team for the next two months,” Rainey said. “We want the effort and energy — if we can do that every single day, I think we’ll be pretty proud.”

As for her aspirations for the season, Curtin put it quite simply.

“We want to win and be the best we can be and take it game by game,” Curtin said. “But who wouldn’t want to win the league?”