With Thanksgiving over and the holiday season upon us, it seems appropriate to take time to be thankful for the strong fall sports season that Columbia Athletics had this year. With the shocking 8-2 Columbia Football winning season, the Columbia community exposed themselves as true bandwagon fans, but the success of other programs was also something new and exciting to follow for many new Lions fans. This past season was one to remember, and while football may have stolen the spotlight, other teams—specifically Columbia Women’s Soccer—also have earned the bragging rights of a successful season.
The Lions (9-5-2 overall, 5-1-1 conference) had a lot to celebrate this season. With 6 back-to-back shutout wins that would lead them to making program history with a 5-0 standing before their Yale game, Columbia Women’s Soccer experienced one of their best seasons in recent memory. With the exception of Seton Hall early into the season, every game that Columbia won was a shutout, proving that the Lions dominated the field. Despite experiencing losses on the road early into the season, everything seemed to change at Cornell: with a 2-0 win, the Lions would begin to show considerable momentum once they began to play in-conference games. Columbia would later win against Brown and Penn in hard fought overtimes and beat Wagner at a staggering 11-0. The Lions would end their season with a loss to Yale and finish with a tied game versus Harvard.
While the end of their season does not reflect their impressive results amongst the Ivies, several players stood out on the field. Senior defender Natalie Ambrose was recognized as the Ivy League Defensive Player of the Year, goalkeeper Sophie Whitehouse was also recognized for Ivy League Player of the Week and midfielder Natalie Neshat was Top Drawer Soccer’s National Women’s Team of the Week after Columbia’s 2-0 win against Princeton.
Columbia Women’s Soccer held their own this season. After a strong season for both the men and women’s soccer teams, Columbia Soccer will definitely be something worth watching next year, especially if Columbia Football decides to take another 20 year hiatus. Columbia Athletics has had an impressively strong start to a new academic year: maybe it’s time to really start learning Roar, Lion, Roar.