Mid-Atlantic Review, Week 6
By D3soccer.com Contributor
We are on the downslope of the season, with only four weeks remaining before playoffs begin. We’re also heading into the thick of conference play. The Centennial Conference schedule is going to be exciting for the next few weeks, as many of its members are regionally ranked or right on the cusp of being ranked. But, the biggest conference game this week, arguably, will be the Messiah-Arcadia matchup in the MAC Commonwealth. Also, this week, Johns Hopkins-Dickinson will be epic in the Centennial. And, let’s not forget the Gettysburg-Haverford matchup - can the Bullets stay perfect?
Let’s take a look at how the Mid-Atlantic Region’s top-ranked teams fared this week:
Messiah (10-1-0 / 1-0-0) D3Soccer.com No. 1 / MA Region No. 1
Messiah hosted No. 19 Dickinson (7-1-3 / 3-0-1) Wednesday night and once again struck early, scoring on their first shot of the game. A pair of All-American seniors hooked up for that score, with Sunny Gelnovatch hitting Brook Firestone with a beautifully weighted through-ball that got Firestone behind the Red Devil defense. With defenders all over her back, Firestone touched a perfect shot past the sprawling keeper, scoring in just the fourth minute of the game. The Falcons eased up a bit after that, concentrating on possession and waiting for their opportunities against a very good Dickinson defense. The Falcons had several good chances throughout the rest of the game but could not score any insurance goals. The Falcon defense limited the Red Devils scoring chances and junior keeper Lydia Ewing scooped up anything that came her way, finishing with three saves. Messiah finished with a 19-8 shot advantage (9-3 SOG) and a 5-2 advantage on corner kicks in the 1-0 win.
The Falcons hosted Alvernia (3-8-0 / 0-1-0) Saturday evening, opening up MAC Commonwealth play with a 7-0 lopsided victory. The Falcon soccer team seemed to be emulating the women’s basketball team, as all their scores were either from rebounds or from “way downtown”. Three Messiah players - Ellie Lengacher, Sunny Gelnovatch, and Brianna Seip - launched shots from “3-point land” and beat the Golden Wolves keeper from deep. Four others - Brooke and Kylie Firestone, Lengacher, and Rebecca Ritchie - drove to the hoop, er - rather net, and followed up their own rebounds after an initial stop by the keeper. Their shooting percentage early on was at 80%, when they started the game scoring four goals on five shots. The Falcon defense did their part, holding Alvernia to three shots with only one of those being on frame. The Falcons put up 30 shots, with 16 being on goal, and took six corners to one for the Golden Wolves.
The Falcons host No. 16 Arcadia (10-1-1 / 1-0-0) Wednesday night in a match that will, for all intents and purposes, determine where the MAC Commonwealth playoffs will be held this year. Messiah then heads to Widener (10-2-0 / 1-0-0) Saturday evening, continuing conference play with another team that made the conference playoffs last season.
Johns Hopkins (7-1-3 / 1-0-2) D3Soccer.com No. 5 / MA Region No. 2
John Hopkins traveled to Haverford (8-1-1 / 2-0-1) Saturday afternoon and continued their offensive struggles, drawing with the Fords 1-1 for their second-straight Centennial Conference tie. Despite putting up 19 shots, the Blue Jays were only able to put five on frame - the same number that the Fords managed on eight total shots. Rachel Jackson evened the game in the 68th minute after the Fords had opened scoring in the 12th minute. Eight corner kicks were taken by the Blue Jays compared to five for Haverford. The game was a very physical affair, with 31 fouls being called compared to 27 shots. Hopkins now finds itself sixth in the conference standings, a strange position for this highly talented team, but surely they will march up the standings as conference play continues.
The Blue Jays will host No. 19 Dickinson (7-1-3 / 3-0-1) Tuesday night in an important Centennial Conference matchup that will determine seeding order and location of the playoffs. It will be an interesting contest with Hopkins’ current struggles on offense and the staunch Red Devil defense running like a well-oiled machine. The Blue Jays then host Muhlenberg (5-3-1 / 0-2-1) Saturday afternoon in another Centennial Conference contest.
Arcadia (10-1-1 / 1-0-0) D3Soccer.com 16 / MA Region No. 3
Arcadia opened MAC Commonwealth play Saturday at Lebanon Valley (3-6-0 / 0-1-0), beating the Dutchmen by a final of 3-1. The Knights got on the board early in the third minute when junior Victoria Casey put home a ball off a corner. Seniors Bridget Sway and Karlie Flowers also scored for the Knights. The Knights took 20 shots to eight for LVC but held just a slight advantage in shots on goal at 7-6. Arcadia also took five corners to two for the Dutchmen. Junior keeper Brianna Williams made five saves in the win and gave up just the third goal against her this season in nearly a thousand minutes of play.
The Knights will travel to Messiah (10-1-0 / 1-0-0) Wednesday night, hoping to force the Falcons to come to Glenside in a few weeks for this season’s MAC Commonwealth playoffs. They will then host the Warriors of Lycoming (7-4-1 / 0-1-0) Saturday night in another MAC Commonwealth Conference bout.
Dickinson (7-1-3 / 3-0-1) D3Soccer.com 19 / MA Region No. 4
Dickinson surrendered an early goal Wednesday night at Messiah (10-1-0 / 1-0-0) and could never slip one past the Falcon keeper to even things up, settling for a 0-1 loss to the No. 1-ranked Falcons. Despite giving up the early goal, the Red Devils continued to play hard and battled evenly with Messiah for much of the match. The defense played stellar, holding the potent Falcon offense to 19 shots (9 SOG) and only five corners. The offense was able to generate several chances but couldn’t find the equalizer. Senior Addy Zandi was especially effective for the Red Devils, playing several different positions and all but a few minutes of the game. Despite suffering their first loss of the season, the Red Devils once again showed that they can play with some of the top teams in the country.The Red Devils have faced five teams so far this season that made the 2018 NCAA Tournament and have gone an impressive 2-1-2 against those teams, including a 1-1 tie at No. 2 Christopher Newport and now this 0-1 loss to No. 1 Messiah.
Zandi again played a big part for the Red Devils at Ursinus (3-5-2 / 0-4-0) Saturday afternoon, scoring a goal and adding two assists in their 3-0 Centennial Conference victory. Sophomore Charlotte Glancey scored two goals for the Red Devils on corners served up by Zandi. The Red Devil defense was once again exemplary, holding the Bears to a single shot that was not on target. Dickinson is currently ranked 25th in the nation in goals-against average. The Red Devils outshot the Bears 12-1 (7-0 SOG) and held a 9-3 advantage in corner kicks.
After facing off against the nation’s No. 1 team Wednesday night, the Red Devils have to travel to No. 5 Johns Hopkins (7-1-3 / 1-0-2) this Tuesday night in a game with conference, regional, and national ranking implications. They’ll then return home to host Washington College (4-5-2 / 1-3-1) Saturday afternoon.
Stevens (6-3-1 / 1-0-0) D3Soccer.com No. 24 / SA Region No. 5
Stevens made their first venture to Misericordia (4-4-2 / 0-1-0) as MAC Freedom Conference foes and the contest lived up to the billing. The two conference heavyweights battled back and forth in a physical bout that looked destined to see extra time until All-American Julia Panko made a beautiful move to shake her defender and launch a perfect strike past the Cougar keeper in the 88th minute. The Stevens defense held off the subsequent push by the Cougar offense and stifled the Misericordia attack, just as they had for most of the evening. Sophomore keeper Izzy DiDario recorded four saves in the huge conference win. The Ducks were outshot 13-16 by the Cougars but put just as many on target as Misericordia at four apiece. The Ducks did allow ten corners while only taking five, a stat Head Coach Jeff Parker will want remedied.
The Ducks will host Wilkes (4-4-1 / 1-0-0) Saturday afternoon in their MAC Freedom Conference home opener. The Colonels are the other team in their new conference with recent NCAA Tournament experience, last making the championship tournament in 2017.
Swarthmore (8-3-0 / 3-2-0) D3Soccer.com No. 23 / MA Region No. 6
Swarthmore traveled to Washington College (4-5-2 / 1-3-1) Wednesday night and dominated the stat sheet, getting off 21 shots to the Shorewomen’s six (8-4 SOG), but could not put in the game-winner until the 81st minute when freshman Nikki Gibbons beat the Washington defense and keeper with a blast from 30 yards out. The Garnet defense and keeper Chantal Reyes held off any further attack and held on for the 1-0 Centennial Conference win. The Garnet took five corners, while the Shorewomen did not attempt any.
Saturday, the Garnet peppered the Franklin and Marshall (5-4-1 / 1-3-0) goalkeeper with 18 shots on target but could only put one past her in the 1-0 Centennial Conference win. Junior Sophia Stills headed in a free kick in the 69th minute with her back to the goal to beat Diplomat keeper Sara Ghorashi, who stopped the other 17 shots she had faced in the match. The Garnet outshot the Diplomats 24-7 (18-4 SOG) while corners were even at four apiece.
The Garnet are off this week with no games scheduled. Their next game will be against Farmingdale State (6-3-2 / 3-0-0) on Columbus Day, Oct. 14.
Gettysburg (9-0-0 / 4-0-0) D3Soccer.com RV / MA Region No. 7
Gettysburg, the last remaining undefeated team in the Mid-Atlantic Region, pummeled Bryn Mawr (5-4-0 / 0-3-0) Saturday afternoon 5-0 in a Centennial Conference matchup. The Bullets scored four first-half goals with Brooke Priddy and Erika Muskus scoring singles and Charlotte Cenatiempo putting in two. Isabel Klatt added a late goal and the Bullet defense, ranked 16th in the nation in Goals-Against Average and 15th in Save Percentage, limited the Owl offense to just two shots on goal. The Bullets outshot the Owls 20-3 (15-2 SOG) and held a 7-1 advantage in corner kicks. Gettysburg’s perfect start is its best since starting the 1993 season off with 14 consecutive wins.
The Bullets have just one game this week, hosting Haverford (8-1-1 / 2-0-1) Saturday afternoon in a Centennial Conference matchup.
McDaniel (9-2-0 / 3-1-0) D3Soccer.com RV / MA Region No. 8
McDaniel headed to Albright (6-5-0 / 0-1-0) Wednesday night for a non-conference match and battled to a 1-0 victory. The winning goal came in the 81st minute off of a short corner, when Kristen Worry went to the end line and sent a ball back across the six-yard box where Megan Henderson was waiting to launch a strike. The Albright keeper got her hands on it, but the momentum of the shot was too great and it broke free and trickled across the goal line. The Green Terror outshot the Lions 20-3 (11-3 SOG) and led in corners 6-2.
Saturday afternoon, the Green Terror hosted Washington College (4-5-2 / 1-3-1) and came away with a 4-1 Centennial Conference victory. Junior Kathryn Dixon scored a pair of goals for McDaniel and Kristen Worry and Maddie Schwartz added singles. The Green Terror only put up 9 shots, but 7 of those were on goal and produced four scores. The Shorewomen were limited to just three shots, with only one of those being on frame. McDaniel took eight corners to zero for Washington.
The Green Terror go on the road this week for two Centennial Conference matches, first at Franklin and Marshall (5-4-1 / 1-3-0)l Tuesday night and then heading up to Bryn Mawr (5-4-0 / 0-3-0) Saturday afternoon.
Misericordia (4-4-2 / 0-1-0) D3Soccer.com NR / MA Region No. 9
Misericordia hosted Stevens (6-3-1 / 1-0-0) Saturday night in one of the premier games of the weekend. The matchup featured the two heavyweights of the MAC Freedom Conference, two teams that have extensive postseason play, including numerous trips to the NCAA Championship Tournament in the last few years. Saturday night’s game lived up to expectations, with aggressive play on both sides and back-and-forth action up and down the field. The game seemed headed to extra time when Stevens launched a shot from 25 yards out that caught the upper 90, just out of the reach of keeper Alexis Benedetto. That 88th minute goal proved to be the difference and the Cougars fell 0-1 in their conference opener. The Cougars outshot the Ducks 16-13 and took 10 corners to Stevens’ five, but could not crack the Duck defense.
The Cougars are now a very un-Misericordia-like 1-4-2 in their last seven games, but that record shouldn’t concern Cougar fans that much at this point, as they will do fine in conference play. The bigger concern is that they will now, in all likelihood, have to travel to Hoboken for the MAC Freedom Conference Playoffs and beat Stevens on their own turf to win the conference. And, while the meat of their schedule is over, they still have some challenging games ahead of them, including a few important regional matchups that will factor heavily in determining at-large selections at the end of the year, should the Cougars miss out on the automatic bid. They pretty much need to be perfect from this point on.
The Cougars recuperate this week before traveling to FDU-Florham (9-2-1 / 0-1-0) Saturday afternoon for a MAC Freedom match, their only game of the week.
Haverford (8-1-1 / 2-0-1) D3Soccer.com NR / MA Region No. 10
Haverford scored early and held off No. 5 Johns Hopkins (7-1-3 / 1-0-2) for much of the match, but finally surrendered a goal, settling for a 1-1 draw with the Centennial Conference powerhouse. The Fords gave up 19 shots, but limited quality chances to the Blue Jays by allowing only five of those 19 to be on frame. They put five shots on goal themselves in only 8 shots and took five corners to Hopkins’ eight. Freshman Celia Page scored in the 12th minute of play and the Fords, who prior to this game were the 27th-ranked team in the nation in Goals-Against Average, stymied the Blue Jay offensive surges. In the overtime periods, Johns Hopkins registered five shots on goal, but the Fords were the only team to put shots on frame.
The Fords hit the road this week, first heading to Ursinus (3-5-2 / 0-4-0) Tuesday night before heading out to Gettysburg (9-0-0 / 4-0-0) this Saturday to take on the perfect Bullets in a Centennial Conference matchup with important regional ranking implications.
Watching… and how they did this past week.
That was an exciting week #6! Lots of conference rivalries and some real surprises on where some teams sit in the standings right now. Will the tables right themselves as the season progresses? Or, is there a new order of things? A changing of the guard? Check back next week as these conference battles heat up and teams jockey for playoff positions. D3Soccer.com will cover all the Mid-Atlantic drama as it unfolds.
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