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September 11, 2011

Joy Piirto Scores Twice But Captains Fall, 3-2, to Kean University

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. -- In the finale of the 2011 Captains Classic, Christopher Newport University (2-3) got a pair of goals from rookie Joy Piirto (Charlottesville, Va.), including a late-game equalizer, but it wouldn't be enough as Kean University (3-2) emerged with a late score of their own for the 3-2 win. 

The Captains jumped out to a 1-0 lead at halftime, when Piirto connected for her first career goal in the 31st minute. After several half-chances in the box for the Captains, a Kean defender failed to clear the ball and freshman midfielder Kelsey Snyder (Stafford, Va.) collected it on the right side. Snyder slipped a pass to the to Piirto in the box who hammered a hard shot through the goalkeepers hands.

Both teams managed three shots apiece with the Captains putting all three on frame. The pace amped up in the second half as the two teams combined for 14 shots in the last 45 minutes.

Two of those shots gave Kean the lead less than seven minutes into the half. Shelby Pedersen made a run down the right side and lofted the ball over the outstretched arms of CNU goalkeeper Meghan Gumbs (Mastic, N.Y.), where Julianna Natale was waiting to chest in the equalizer. Just 1:26 later, Natale caught the CNU defense on their heels with a long cross from just over midfield that landed in the box and to the feet of Danielle Esposito. Natale struck for the goal, her first this season, to take the lead.

With plenty of time remaining in the second half, the Captains remained aggressive offensively and tied the game in the 76th minute. After a scrum in the box, the Kean goalkeeper, Kaitlin King, was unable to hold onto the ball and it squirted out to the left side. Piirto was their to clean up, sending a hard shot high into the goal.

The tie would not hold though, as the Cougars answered less than a minute later. Amanda Repko headed in a score off a corner kick to re-take the lead for good. Carly Seidel took the corner kick for the assist.

Kean held a 12-8 advantage in shots taken over the Captains, but both teams put seven on-frame. Gumbs made four saves for CNU while King stopped five shots for the Cougars.

CNU returns to action next Sunday, September 18, with a home game against Roanoke College at 1:00 pm.

KEAN      0   3      3
CNUW    1   1      2

30:30   CNUW   Piirto, Joy (1) from Snyder
50:11   KEAN     Natale, Julianna (1) from Pedersen
51:37   KEAN     Esposito (3) from Natale
75:44   CNUW   Piirto, Joy (2) unassisted
76:42   KEAN     Repko, Amanda (1) from Seidel

Shots: KEAN (12), CNUW (8)
Corner Kicks: KEAN (7), CNUW (4)
Saves: KEAN-King (5); CNUW-Gumbs (4)

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M:
5:00 PM
Centre at Amherst
Video
M:
7:45 PM
Tufts at Calvin
Video Live stats
Friday, Dec. 6: All times Eastern
W:
11:00 AM
Carnegie Mellon at Messiah
Video Live stats
W:
1:45 PM
William Smith at Pomona-Pitzer
Video Live stats