NEWARK—Freshman forward ASHLEY CUNHA (Edison, NJ/Edison) extended her streak of consecutive games with at least two points to six in a row to open her collegiate career and sophomore forward JULIA CASERES (Union, NJ/Union) added an assist as New Jersey City University scored in the 16th minute and used a strong defensive effort in poor weather to shutout SUNY-Old Westbury, 1-0, in the opening round of the Scarlet Raider Soccer Classic hosted by Rutgers-Newark at Alumni Field. The game was played under rainy and windy conditions.
NJCU wins its third consecutive game to improve to 4-2 while facing the Panthers (1-2) for the first time. It was the second year in a row that NJCU has won an opening round game in this tournament by a 1-0 final. NJCU outshot the Panthers, 11-5 and had a 6-1 edge in corners.
The only goal NJCU needed came at 15:28 of the opening period. Caseres sent a cross from the right side into the left of the box, allowing Cunha to easily bury her eighth goal of the year—the second most in the New Jersey Athletic Conference behind Caseres (nine goals), who contributed her league-best sixth assist of the season and 24th point.
Cunha has had at least two points in all six of NJCU’s games. It was the fifth time this year that Cunha has scored on an assist from Caseres.
From there, NJCU’s defensive made the score hold up, led by junior keeper KELLY REILLY (Pennsville, NJ/Pennsville Memorial), who made two saves to extend her career school record for shutouts to 12. She also came off her line to thwart two breakaway attempts before a shot could be taken as the Knights blanked an opponent for the first time this season.
Sophomore keeper Jennifer Kupfer (Bellmore, NY/Mepham) had four saves in defeat for Old Westbury.
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