South Atlantic Week in Review- Week 9
By D3soccer.com Contributor
We’re into the last week of the regular season. Conference playoffs will start at the completion of week ten, meaning we’re only 2 weeks from NCAA Championship Tournament selection. TCNJ took hold of the NJAC, despite drawing with Stockton. Centre won their fifth straight SAA regular season title. The CAC seedings will be decided this week in Newport News when first place Salisbury visits Christopher Newport. Meanwhile, the ODAC will go down to the wire deciding who plays who and when and where. Plenty of scoreboard watching will be going on this week across the South Atlantic.
Let’s take a look at what the top teams in the South Atlantic region did this week and what we have to look forward to in the upcoming week…
TCNJ (13-1-1 / 7-0-1) D3Soccer.com No. 2 / SA Region #1
TCNJ hosted Stockton (13-3-2 / 5-1-2) Wednesday night in an important New Jersey Athletic Conference matchup, and the teams battled 110 minutes to a scoreless draw. The game had originally been scheduled for last week but was postponed due to weather. The game was physical with more fouls called (23) than shots taken (19), including a yellow card for the Ospreys and a red card for the Lions. TCNJ took 18 total shots, with 11 of those on goal, while Stockton was held to a single, errant shot. Each team attempted two corner kicks. Stockton keeper Jennifer Devault made 11 saves during the contest.
The Lions bounced back Saturday at Montclair State (11-5-2 / 6-1-1), clinching the number one seed for the NJAC postseason with a 3-0 win. Taylor Nolan, Randi Smith, and Kelly Carolan scored for the Lions, and the defense never let the Red Hawks get back into the game. TCNJ outshot Montclair State 14-6 (8-5 SOG) and took eight corners to zero for MSU.
The Lions will host Rowan (9-6-1 / 4-3-1) Wednesday night to conclude their NJAC and regular season schedules. TCNJ will play host throughout the NJAC playoffs.
Christopher Newport (15-1-2 / 8-1-0) D3Soccer.com No. 8 / SA Region #2
Christopher Newport traveled to Southern Virginia (3-14-1 / 1-8-0) Wednesday night and scored four second half goals en route to a 5-0 Capital Athletic Conference victory. Captain Riley Cook played a factor in every goal, scoring four and assisting on the other. Her nine points set a new program record for points in a single game for the Captains. The junior now holds almost every program record for the Captains and has another year to expand on them. Christopher Newport took 25 shots, with 12 shots on goal, while the Knights took two shots, both on goal. The Captains took ten corner kicks while Southern Virginia took only one.
The Captains traveled to York (Pa.) (7-11-0 / 4-5-0) Saturday afternoon for their last road game of the season, beating the Spartans 3-0 in the Capital Athletic Conference match. Riley Cook, Molly Beegle, and Carson Pokorny scored for the Captains, with Cook garnering her seventh game-winning goal for the season and 24th for her career. The Captains put up 22 shots with 11 of those on goal, while the Spartans were held to six total shots with two of those on goal. Corner kicks were even at four.
The Captains will host Salisbury (13-2-2 / 9-0-0) Wednesday night with the CAC regular season title and playoff seedings on the line. Salisbury currently sits atop the CAC standings, thanks to their 5-2 home conference victory against Christopher Newport back on October 12th. The Captains need to win and take some tiebreakers to be the number one seed, while the Sea Gulls need only to win or draw.
Centre (18-0-0 / 7-0-0) D3Soccer.com No. 6 / SA Region #3
Centre hosted Sewanee (7-6-2 / 4-2-1) Saturday afternoon for their Senior Day, crushing the Tigers by a 5-0 final. With the win, the Colonels completed their second straight undefeated regular season and their fifth straight Southern Athletic Association undefeated slate. Meghan Paynter scored two goals for the Colonels, while Alana Hughes, Kristin Dean, and Sarah Sirkin scored once. The Colonels were equally dominant on defense as offense, holding the Tigers to a single, off-target shot while putting up 28 shots with 14 of those being on goal. Centre also held an incredible 20-0 edge in corner kicks.
Centre will now kickoff the SAA postseason by hosting No. 8 seed Millsaps on Saturday. They recently defeated Millsaps 7-0 on October 20th.
Emory (10-4-0 / 2-2-0) D3Soccer.com 22 / SA Region #4
Emory hosted Huntingdon (5-10-2 / 4-3-1) Sunday afternoon and scored five goals… in the first half and five more in the second half en route to a 10-0 non-conference victory. Natalie Klar scored twice for the Eagles and seven other players added goals, with the Hawks adding an own goal for good measure. The Eagles dominated the scoreboard and the stat sheet, putting up 37 shots with 17 of those on goal, while holding the Hawks to a single, off-target shot. The Eagles also took the only 11 corner kicks of the game.
Emory will be one of the few teams in the Southern Atlantic Region still playing regular season games after this week, with no postseason for the University Athletic Association. The Eagles host two UAA games this week, first Brandeis (10-5-0 / 1-3-0) Friday evening, then New York University (10-5-0 / 1-3-0) Sunday morning.
Randolph-Macon (16-0-0 / 8-0-0) D3Soccer.com 15 / SA Region #5
Randolph-Macon hosted Lynchburg (9-6-1 / 4-4-0) Wednesday afternoon and had to make a comeback but beat the Hornets 4-3 for the important ODAC win. Lynchburg started the scoring off in the 18th minute, but the Yellow Jackets answered with two of their own when McKenna Maier and Gabby Nelson scored in the 32nd and 39th minutes, respectively, to take a 2-1 lead. Lynchburg answered in the 41st minute, leaving the teams tied 2-2 at halftime. The Hornets came out strong in the second half, scoring in the 56th minute to take a 3-2 lead that they held until the 66th minute, when Gabby Nelson scored her second goal of the game. The Yellow Jackets kept their perfect season going when Nicole Czyzewski scored in the 82nd minute and the defense made it stand. The Yellow Jackets held a 15-11 shot advantage (8-4 SOG) and held a 5-1 advantage in corner kicks.
The Yellow Jackets hosted Hollins (4-10-0 / 1-7-0) Saturday afternoon for their Senior Day and all six seniors celebrated by scoring a goal. So did a couple more players in the 9-0 ODAC win. Seniors Gabby Nelson, Abbie Winkelman, Ellis Mumford, Haley Silva, and Madi Powell scored for Randolph-Macon. Even senior keeper Christina Newman converted a penalty kick to get in on the action and make sure all the seniors shared the moment. The Yellow Jackets launched an incredible 65 shots at Hollins, with 29 of those on goal. They also took 11 corner kicks to zero for Hollins. The 16-0 start for the Yellow Jackets is the best start in program history and the most consecutive wins in a season.
Randolph-Macon finishes up the regular season by hosting Eastern Mennonite (9-5-1 / 3-4-1) Wednesday night before traveling to Ferrum (8-6-2 / 4-3-1) Saturday evening, both games Old Dominion Athletic Conference matchups.
Roanoke (12-4-1 / 6-2-0) D3Soccer.com NR / SA Region #6
Roanoke hosted Washington and Lee (14-0-2 / 7-0-1) Wednesday night in an ODAC matchup between two of the conference’s top teams. The match lived up to its billing, as the two teams battled back and forth, playing physical defense and limiting chances. Each team had its chances to score, but neither could until the 78th minute, when Washington and Lee snuck one in. The Maroons could not net the equalizer and fell to the still unbeaten Generals 0-1 to fall to a third place tie in the ODAC. The Maroons trailed in total shots 6-10 (1-5 SOG) and corner kicks 3-5.
Like many teams this past weekend, the Maroons honored their seniors when they hosted Eastern Mennonite (9-5-1 / 3-4-1) Saturday afternoon. Two seniors, Hailey Davis and Madeleine Dickinson, combined for a score in the 22nd minute to give Roanoke a 1-0 lead and that would be all that the defense needed, holding the Royals to only four shots, three of which were on goal. The Maroons put up 22 shots with 12 on goal and held an 8-3 advantage in corner kicks.
The Maroons finish the regular season with a couple of ODAC matchups, first hosting Ferrum (8-6-2 / 4-3-1) Wednesday night before heading to Hollins (4-10-0 / 1-7-0) for a Saturday afternoon matinee. Roanoke currently sits in third place in the ODAC and are in a position to host at least one playoff game.
Montclair State University (11-5-2 / 6-1-1) D3Soccer.com NR / SA Region #7
Montclair State blasted New Jersey City (7-9-1 / 0-7-1) Tuesday night 7-0 at home to remain tied at the top of the NJAC standings. Six different Red Hawks scored, with Emily Beenders scoring two and Samantha Senatore, Christine Mayorga, Lindsay Bathmann, Chisom Onyewyenyi, and Tori Rolls adding singles. The Red Hawks outshot the Gothic Knights 28-4 (12-3 SOG) and took seven corners to zero for New Jersey City.
The Red Hawks were stymied Saturday afternoon when they ran into a TCNJ (13-1-1 / 7-0-1) team coming straight off of a conference draw and determined to not relinquish any more ground in the NJAC standings. The Red Hawks were unable to generate much offense against the Lions defense, limited to just six shots in the match. They did manage to put five of those on goal but weren’t able to put one in the net. Despite the loss, the Red Hawks maintain their hold on second place heading into the playoffs.
The Red Hawks hit the road for the end of the regular season, visiting Kean (8-8-1 / 3-4-1) Wednesday night for their NJAC finale.
Lynchburg (9-6-1 / 4-4-0) D3Soccer.com No. NR / SA Region #8
Lynchburg traveled to Randolph-Macon (16-0-0 / 8-0-0) Wednesday afternoon and put a scare into the undefeated Yellow Jackets, taking a lead well into the second half before falling by a 3-4 final. The Hornets twice took a lead and failed to hold it, getting outshot 11-15 (4-8 SOG) and trailing 1-5 in corner kicks. Despite two goals from Alyssa Rudy and another one from Natalya Rodriguez, the Hornets could not hold leads of 1-0 and 3-2. The four goals allowed by Lynchburg is the most since its 5-0 loss to TCNJ in the 2017 NCAA Tournament East Sectional.
The Hornets entered Sunday’s ODAC contest at Shenandoah (11-6-0 / 6-3-0) having dropped two straight conference games and desperately needing to right the ship. It didn’t happen. The Hornets struggled to get shots on target, putting up 11 shots but only getting two of those on frame. Lynchburg found themselves down by two goals early in the second half, and could only manage an Alyssa Rudy goal in the 55th minute, falling to Shenandoah by the final of 1-2. This loss marks the first time since 2006 that the Hornets have dropped three straight games. For their part, Shenandoah clinched a spot in the upcoming ODAC playoffs with the win, its first ever against Lynchburg. Lynchburg now finds itself in unfamiliar territory, as it occupies 8th place in the ODAC standings.
The Hornets finish at Guilford (6-8-2 / 2-5-1) Wednesday night, then host Virginia Wesleyan (9-3-3 / 5-2-1) Saturday afternoon. Both games are must-wins for the Hornets, who will, at best, be on the road for the majority of the conference playoffs.
Watching… and how they fared this week.
This week marks the end of the regular season for most conferences and the start of conference playoffs. While many teams make their conference playoffs, most of the 440 teams in NCAA DIII Women’s Soccer will not, meaning that many young women will be playing their last game of competitive soccer this week. Whether through graduation, injury, or pursuing other interests, many women will never lace up the cleats again and play an NCAA game. Take a moment this week and think about those young women as we watch these final games of the regular season.
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