Men's Soccer Blanks Rowan in NJAC Opener

Box Score

Montclair, NJ (9/16/10) –  Junior midfielder Mike Pytlar (Califon, NJ / West Morris) scored twice while senior forward Larry Geraghty (Cranford, NJ / St. Benedict’s Prep) added a goal and assist as Montclair State blanked Rowan, 5-0  in the New Jersey Athletic Conference opener for both teams at Sprague Field on Thursday evening.

Freshman Dan Mendoza (Hackensack, NJ / Hackensack) picked up a pair of assists as the Red Hawks improved to 4-1-2 overall (1-0-0 NJAC) following their NJAC Championship Game rematch with the Profs. Last year, Montclair downed Rowan 1-0 to claim its fourth straight league crown.

Senior goalkeeper Charlie Cunliffe (Lakewood, NJ / Lakewood) made four saves for the Profs, who dropped their third straight and fell to 3-3-1 (0-1-0 NJAC).

Montclair State got on the board just over the 12-minute mark of the contest. Off the fourth of six corner kicks in the first half by the Red Hawks, Geraghty served the ball into the box where it found freshman Matt Slattery (Newtown, CT / Newtown), who then headed in the pass from five yards out for a 1-0 MSU lead.

Pytlar extended the lead to 2-0 with the first of his two at the 16:44 mark, scoring off an assist from Mendoza. SeniorThomas Benack (Sparta, NJ / Lenape Valley) accounted for the final goal of the half as he flipped in a pass from Will O’Connor (Wyckoff, NJ / Ramapo) with 6:46 to go before halftime.

Pytlar made it a four-goal lead just 38 seconds into the second half when he intercepted a back pass from a defender before driving in a shot from seven yards out for his second of the game and the year. Geraghty got the last goal as he and Mendoza executed a perfect give-and-go before Geraghty went top shelf into the right corner for his third marker of the year.

Sophomore Anthony Rogic (Boonton, NJ / Morris Catholic) made a pair of saves for his fourth straight shutout and fifth of the year. He also got a lift from O’Connor, who thwarted the Profs’ best scoring chance of the night. Off a loose ball, Ryan Gordon (Cherry Hill, NJ / Cherry Hill West) was able to beat Rogic to the ball, lifting a shot over the keeper’s head. The ball seemed headed toward the goal, however O’Connor raced in and swept the ball away keeping Rowan off the scoreboard.

Montclair State is now off until Wednesday, September 22 when they take the short nine-mile trip to Wayne, NJ to face William Paterson in an NJAC contest at 7:00 pm. Rowan will play a non-conference contest on Saturday, September 18 at home versus Scranton before heading back into NJAC play on the 22nd with a home contest versus Rutgers-Camden also at 7:00 pm.