Springfield, Mass. - November 15, 2008 - Springfield College senior goalkeeper Sue Jenney (Agawam, Mass.) saved a Union penalty kick with 55 seconds remaining in regulation to lift the 18th-ranked Pride to a 1-0 win over No. 12 Union in the first round of the NCAA Division III Women's Soccer Tournament on a rainy Saturday afternoon.
With the win, the Pride improves to 16-3-2 and reaches the 16-win plateau for the second straight season. The Dutchwomen's season comes to a close with a 14-5-1 mark.
Springfield will now take on No. 9 Amherst on Sunday afternoon at 1:00 pm. Earlier in the season, the two teams tied, 1-1.
The game was played with rain coming and going, but the major weather factor was the wind. Springfield played with the wind at its back in the first half, while Union had it in the second.
Union, which had control of seemingly the entire second half, was awarded a penalty kick in the 89th minute after the Pride were whistled for a hand ball on the edge of the box. Union's Sara Wilson (Wilbraham, Mass.) took the penalty kick for the Dutchwomen, but her shot was just to the right of Jenney, who punched it away to keep Union off the scoreboard. Union then had two follow up shots that members of the Springfield defense were able to block, ending any chance for a Union tally.
"What can I say about Sue (Jenney) on the penalty kick with 55 seconds to go. It was the save of the year," said Springfield head coach John Gibson.
"This has been the story of our NCAA lives over the past few years. We do just about everything -- create good shots, outshoot the other team, everything -- but we just could not put the ball in the back of the net. It's been like this for us before," said Union head coach Brian Speck. "But give lots of credit to Springfield. John (Gibson) coaches them so they know right where they need to be. And give credit to their goalkeeper. She came up with the big save on the penalty kick, and we had more opportunities right after that. With the wind, against the wind, we just couldn't score."
Outshooting the Pride in the game 25-6 and holding an 11-2 advantage in corner kicks, Union had several outstanding opportunities to score, especially late in the second half. However, Jenney and her defensive line of Kayla Thibeault (Lebanon, Conn.), Jess Prencipe (Andover, Mass.), Delaney Cantrall (Santa Paula, Calif.), and Gina Calabrese (East Longmeadow, Mass.) put forth a spirited defensive effort en route to shutting out the 12th-ranked team in the country.
After Jenney made a diving save on Katie McLean's (Newton, Mass.) shot from the left corner, Allison Cuozzo (Norfolk, Mass.) had a shot at an empty goal. However, Cantrall came running across the goal line and jumped in front of Cuozzo's shot, bringing the crowd to its feet with just over six minutes to play.
"Union was most impressive in every way. Brian (Speck) has a very nice team. They are very well-coached, well-organized. We had two chances in the second half, but could not capitalize. Considering the wind, I thought we did reasonably well. But to be honest, I thought we stole one today," said Gibson.
The lone goal of the match came in the 25th minute when Nicole Hanewich (Smithfield, R.I.) netted her team-leading 10th goal of the season. After Maria Evans (Gloucester, Mass.) slipped a through ball behind the Dutchwomen defense, Hanewich ran onto the ball just inside the right side of the box. Hanewich then slotted her shot into the far left corner of the goal, just past Union keeper Abby Stohler (West Hartford, Conn.), to give Springfield the only goal it would need. "Nicole scored what I would call a classic Springfield goal. Then we managed to hold on for dear life," said Gibson.
Jenney finished the game with seven saves in goal but was active throughout as she made numerous plays punching away corner kicks and crosses. Stohler finished with just one save in the loss.
Amherst 4, Farmingdale State 0
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – November 15, 2008 – Freshman forward Livia Rizzo (Dover, Mass.) scored a goal and added an assist in leading the Amherst College women’s soccer team to a 4-0 victory over Farmingdale State this afternoon in an NCAA Division III First Round match at Springfield College’s Brock-Affleck Field. Amherst will next face the winner of today's match #2, Springfield vs. Union, tomorrow (Sunday) at 1 pm in the Regional Final.
With the win, Amherst improves to 12-2-3, while the Rams’ season comes to a close with a 12-10 final record.
The game, which was delayed for 30 minutes due to a short-lived thunder storm, was played at times in rain with high gusts of wind.
The Lord Jeffs struck first 6:35 into the game to take an early 1-0 advantage. After Rizzo took the ball in from the left side towards the goal line, she slipped a pass across the goalmouth just past Farmingdale State freshman goalie Amanda Maass (Mastic Beach, N.Y.). From there, it was sophomore forward Jackie Hirsch (Wilmette, Ill.) who ran onto the ball and followed with a blast into the empty net. That was the only goal of the first half.
Amherst controlled much of the first half, holding a 16-1 advantage in shots.
With 27:49 remaining in the game, junior midfielder Meg Murphy, playing in her hometown of Springfield, Mass., gave Amherst a 2-0 lead after she buried a free kick from the top of the box. The NESCAC Player of the Year, Murphy made no mistake as she slotted a shot into the lower right hand corner of the net past a diving Maass.
Farmingdale State’s best chance came with 19 minutes remaining in the game after freshman forward Katrina Cerverizzo (Center Moriches, N.Y.) bent a free kick from 25 yards out that Amherst freshman goalkeeper Allie Horwitz (Woodbridge, Conn.) made a sliding save on.
On the ensuing save, Amherst took control of the ball and brought it up the left flank. Sophomore forward Kyla Woodhouse (Topsham, Me.) flicked a ball to her right in the box, which Rizzo rocketed home for Amherst’s third tally of the contest. That more or less put the game away with 18:35 remaining.
But the Lord Jeffs scored once more in the game's final minute. Junior Cami Farkas (Cambridge, Mass.) did the honors, booting home a shot by senior forward/midfielder Stephanie Yesnik (Arlington, Va.) that fell out of the hands of Maass on the doorstep. The time left in the game was 59 seconds.
"Overall, we had a slow start," said Amherst Head Coach Jen Hughes, "but we seemed to collect ourselves after the (lightning) delay. In the second half, we were determined to put them away, and we did just that.
"Our goalkeeper (Allie Horwitz) played a solid game in net, not giving them an inch," added Hughes. "And Meg Murphy was able to do her thing. In that second half, we did a nice job getting numbers into the attack, and were able to finish some of those opportunities."
"We're really proud of the way we finished up. We made it through a lot of adversity to start the season," said Farmingdale Head Coach Chris Roche, noting how five All-Conference players decided to quit early-on. "But we did OK in the end, making it to the NCAA's once again, this time with nine freshman starters. We were doing all right before the delay, but Amherst really came on in the second half.
"Our program is making improvements in baby steps, but that's all I can ask," said Roche.
Amherst outshot Farmingdale, 29-4. The Rams' Maass finished with 10 total saves, while the Lord Jeffs' Horwitz had two.