Ewing, NJ (11/2/10) – Montclair State's reign atop the New Jersey Athletic Conference came to an end on Tuesday evening as the four-time defending champion Red Hawks were eliminated from the NJAC Tournament by top-seeded The College of New Jersey in penalty kicks. Following a 1-1 tie after 110 minutes, the Lions advanced with a 3-1 shootout victory.
TCNJ Goalkeeper Adam Friedman (Chester, NJ/West Morris Mendham) stopped three out of four Red Hawk shots. Junior Ray Nelan (Haddon Heights, NJ/Haddon Heights), sophomore Vince McEnroe (Hillsborough, NJ/Hillsborough), and junior Dan Constants (Wayne, NJ/Wayne) all found the back of the net in the shootout. Constants was the final shooter to convert.
Montclair State (13-4-3) was eliminated from the NJAC tournament for the first time in five years. The Red Hawks had won four straight conference titles beginning in 2006.
The game was tied 1-1 through 110 minutes of play. The Lions got on the board just over three minutes into the second half to take a 1-0 lead. McEnroe drove a direct kick from 45 yards out to the foot of Mike Razzoli (Parlin, NJ/Christian Brothers Academy) at the top corner of the box. The senior collected the ball, touched it, and drilled a shot from the right side into the left corner pocket. It was Razzoli’s third goal in the last three games.
The Red Hawks tied the match in the 67th minute. Senior Larry Geraghty (Cranford, NJ/St. Benedict’s Prep) sent a corner kick into the box. The ball was flicked and then batted out by Friedman, but sophomore William O’Connor(Wyckoff, NJ/Ramapo) was there to fire a shot into the open net to even the score.
The Red Hawks had the better of play in the opening half, but were unable to capitalize. Their best scoring chance came with under a minute left in the period. Senior Coron Short (Dayton, NJ/South Brunswick) got a shot off from eight yards out that Friedman blocked in front for the save.
Montclair State, which defeated the Lions 5-1 at MSU Soccer Park back on September 25, outshot TCNJ 15-9 and had seven corner kicks while holding New Jersey to none. Sophomore goalkeeper Anthony Rogic (Boonton, NJ / Morris Catholic) had three saves.