Montclair, NJ (9/8/10) – Freshman Bridgette Barden (Redondo Beach, CA / Notre Dame Academy) netted a pair of second half goals as Steven rallied from a 1-0 halftime deficit, defeating Montclair State University, 2-1, at the MSU Soccer Park on Wednesday afternoon.
The Ducks, now 4-0 on the season, are off to their best start since the 2004 campaign, when they started the season 13-0-1 mark en route to the Skyline Conference championship and NCAA Tournament appearance. The Red Hawks fell to 1-2-1 with their second straight 2-1 defeat.
Montclair, which held a 7-5 shot advantage and 3-1 edge in corners during the first half, came out as the aggressors in the early-going; setting up the game’s first scoring chance in the 20th minute. Following a Stevens foul, sophomore forward Rachel Senyszyn (Succasunna, NJ / Roxbury) looked to stake the Red Hawks to an early lead, but junior goalkeeper Kaitlin McClymont (Corpus Christi, TX/ Flour Bluff) turned away the ensuing penalty kick to preserve the scoreless tie.
After a Jenna Carroll (East Brunswick, NJ / East Brunswick) header off an MSU corner sailed wide at the 21:07 mark, McClymont would get tested on back-to-back shots from freshman forward Allison Wacker (Stockholm, NJ / Wallkiill Valley) in the 29th minute before Senyszyn finally broke through at 30:09, heading in a Katie Minervini (Oceanport, NJ / Shore Regional) cross from the left end-line to give Montclair State the lead heading into the locker room.
Senyszyn looked to put the Red Hawks up two early in the second half, firing a pair of shots on goal in the first few minutes of the frame, but McClymont smothered both chances to keep game at a one-goal margin.
The Ducks finally netted the equalizer in the 75th minute, when Barden tallied her first collegiate goal, winning a loose ball in the box off a throw-in before blasting it into the left corner of the net from seven yards out.
After sending a shot wide at the 78:02 mark, Barden struck again less than a minute later, firing a shot from distance into the top of the Red Hawk goal – past kepper Marisa Zayac (Jackson, NJ / Jackson Memorial) – to give Stevens a 2-1 advantage. From there the Ducks’ defense took over, cooling the Montclair State attack, allowing just one shot over the final 11 minutes of action.
The Ducks finished with a 16-11 edge in shots. McClymont finished with six saves while Zayac had four.
Montclair State returns to action on Saturday, September 11 as they take part in the Manhattanville Tournament in Purchase, NY. MSU faces Eastern Connecticut at 2:30 pm on Saturday before tangling with host Manhattanville on Sunday, September 12 at 12:00 pm.