On Saturday evening, the Brown men’s soccer team (5-4-7, 2-0-5 Ivy League) clinched a postseason berth after a 0-0 draw against Yale (8-5-3, 3-1-3). The Bears’ tie on Saturday led them to their first undefeated Ivy season since 2007 and solidified their fourth place finish in the Ivy League standings.
“We came here and got a result, and the staff and I are excited to coach this team another week and continue to get better,” Head Coach Chase Wileman said in a statement to Brown Athletics. “We're really proud of the team, the program and everyone involved with Brown men’s soccer. We have a postseason game which hasn’t happened in a while, so we’re excited to compete and play another game.”
The Bears took on a Yale team known for its ferocious defense and rapid pace. Led by goalie Chris Edwards and reigning second-team All-Ivy defender TJ Presthus, the Yale Bulldogs limited opponents to one goal or fewer in 11 of their 16 games this year. Their defensive strength showed Saturday, as the Bears did not have a single shot on goal in the first half.
Early in the game, the Bears’ back four defenders resiliently fended off a talented group of Yale forwards. At the 15:51 mark, a Yale corner kick resulted in shots from Bulldogs Presthus and Sam Harshe. But Brown’s defense escaped a threatening situation, as both shots missed — one going out top and the other out left.
Despite a fraught start, Brown picked up the tempo in the second half, as Kojo Dadzie ’24 — who leads the team in scoring this season with seven goals — led the offensive front, firing two shots on goal. Rookie forward Lorenzo Amaral ’27 also added a shot on goal of his own in the second half. Yale’s Edwards, a senior goalie, stood tall, saving both shots and shutting out the Bears.
Midfielder Charlie Adams ’24 wrote in an email to The Herald that despite the scoreless outing, the Bears were able to “get in some great areas against Yale.” Adams credited his teammates, writing that the “defenders and midfielders showed a ton of composure and allowed us to work the ball into some good areas in the attack throughout the game.”
Perhaps the star of the evening for the Bears was goalie Hudson Blatteis ’24. Blatteis played yet another strong game, shutting out the Yale Bulldogs to claim his sixth shutout this season. He also made two saves, both in the second half.
Despite his impressive shutout performance, Blatteis credited his teammates for the scoreless outing. “I think the back four played a major role in the clean sheet Saturday,” Blatteis wrote. “Yale is a team that loves to just kick the ball right over you and run, but I think for the most part we stayed calm and dealt with it well.”
Now, the Bears are prepared to make a postseason run in the first-ever men’s Ivy League soccer tournament. Blatteis wrote that the team is “excited and ready to give it everything.”
Blatteis, who came off the bench midseason to assume the starting goalie spot, added that “playing in the postseason is already a major achievement, but doing it as a senior is even more special. It’s important to go into the mindset of playing every game like it could be your last, and this just makes me appreciate it even more,” he wrote.
The Bears’ preparation will be tested on Friday, when they play the Ivy League’s first-place finisher, Penn (7-3-5, 4-1-2), in the tournament’s semifinal round. The tournament’s winner will receive an automatic bid to the NCAA men’s soccer tournament.
Adams wrote that Penn is a “good team that is very solid defensively,” but noted that the Bears have “been very strong as a team defensively as well and will continue to work on putting the ball in the back of the net.”
“We’re confident in the way we play,” he added.
The Bears and Quakers will face off in Philadelphia Friday at 6:30 p.m. It will be televised on ESPN+.