Field Hockey's NJAC Title Hopes Dashed by TCNJ, 2-0
Ewing, NJ (11/5/11) – Montclair State's bid for its first New Jersey Athletic Conference championship was dashed on Saturday evening as the Red Hawks fell to The College of New Jersey, 2-0 at Lions Stadium.
Fourth-ranked TCNJ ran its winning streak to 10 straight as they improved 20-2 on the season. 20 wins is the most for the Lions since 1999 when that team went 20-0.
The loss was only the second of the season for the Red Hawks as they fell to 18-2, with both of those defeats coming against TCNJ. Sixth-ranked Montclair State, which set a school record for wins in a season, will now wait to see if they receive an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. That field will be announced on Sunday.
The game was scoreless into the final 12 minutes of the game when the Lions scored twice in 2:28 on identical plays. Both were on penalty corners as junior Camille Passucci (Denville, NJ/Morris Knolls) inserted the ball on a penalty corner to freshman Erin Waller (Sewell, NJ/Washington Twp.), who ripped both shots into the net. The first of those goals came with 11:19 remaining and the latter with 8:51.
Defense dominated the opening half as the teams battled through a scoreless 35 minutes. Montclair State had two good opportunities to score, but each time they were denied by Lion defenders. The first of those chances came 14 minutes in as Michelle Hagel (Fairfield, NJ/West Essex) raced with the ball toward TCNJ’s net, but was turned away by Lauren Pigott (Jobstown, NJ/Northern Burlington). The other chance came in the latter stages of the period as Kelly Churchill (Newton, NJ/Newton) broke free, only to have her path to the net cut off by Lion defender Jessica Persicketti (West Deptford, NJ/West Deptford).
Senior goalie Shannon Syciarz (Garwood, NJ/Arthur L. Johnson) made three saves for her eighth shutout of the season.
In goal for the Red Hawks, junior Megan Bosland (Boonton, NJ/Boonton) had six saves.