Lions take victory in cat-fight

The women’s soccer team came away with two more victories this week, dominating Kean University 5-0 on Saturday and defeating Johns Hopkins University 2-0 last Monday.

Remaining unbeaten this season, the Lions move to 8-0-2 overall and 4-0-1 in the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC).

Saturday’s win over Kean University featured a rematch of last year’s conference final. The Lions barraged the net, shooting 24 times throughout the game, with 16 of those shots on goal.

“We keep the field spread and allow our defense to make passes to the outside,” sophomore midfielder Nicole Papola said. “That allows us to work the ball up the field more easily into scoring postion.”

Junior forward Dana DiBruno got things going in the 14th minute by finishing a pass from sophomore forward Allie Schilling. DiBruno now leads the Lions in scoring with six goals on the season.

DiBruno then set up a goal for Schilling on a cross from the corner, giving the Lions a two-goal lead going into the half.

In the second half, junior forward Christine Mullin placed a corner kick in the back of the net for her third goal of the season.

Sophomore forward Jamie Kunkel kept the Lions rolling by scoring off a pass from sophomore defender Jillian Casey. Junior midfielder Kristen Cubicciotti ended the day by finishing an unassisted goal of her own to give the Lions a 5-0 victory.

Another solid performance from the Lions defense kept the leading national goal scorer, senior forward Heather Anzivino, scoreless during the game, allowing her only one shot on goal.

“We knew how good (Anzivino) was coming into the game,” sophomore defender Coleen Weber said. “We just kept keying in on her to not allow her any room to score the way she has against other teams this season.”

Freshman goalkeeper Jessica Clarke made another two saves in 80 minutes of play for her seventh shutout of the season. She has personally gone over 859 minutes without allowing a goal.

For the Cougars, junior goalkeeper Samantha Groh made six saves, while freshman goalkeeper Nicole Groszew made another two after relieving Groh.

After the loss, the Cougars went to 9-3 overall and 3-3 in the NJAC.

Monday’s win over the Blue Jays featured a pair of goals by freshman forward Briann McDonough. Her first goal came late in the first half off a well-placed pass from freshman midfielder Kristina Shemming.

McDonough then scored with only 48 seconds left to seal the game for the Lions.

Once again, the Lions defense held strong, staving off a late offensive burst from the Blue Jays.

Clarke needed to make only two saves to record her sixth shutout of the season. The Lions defense has allowed only two goals in 920 minutes of play.

Teamwork and consistency have marked the Lions defense this season. Rarely does a defender make a mistake without a teammate coming to help.

“Consistently, we work on closing the gaps defensively in order to avoid getting caught in a bad position,” sophomore goalkeeper Amy Hashem said.

“It is expected by everyone on our team that we will not allow goals to be scored,” Weber said. “We have learned from the veterans from last year how to play solid defense and we carry their determination to not give the other team any opportunities.”

Junior goalkeeper Kerry Hamilton registered four saves in the game for the Blue Jays.

Johns Hopkins left Lions’ Stadium ranked 11th with an 8-2 record. The loss ended a five-game win streak by the Blue Jays.

The Lions play tonight at 7:30 p.m. against William Paterson University in Lions’ Stadium.