JERSEY CITY—Sophomore midfielder KATLIN VARGO (Edison, NJ/Union Catholic) tied the game in the 24th minute with one of her two free kick goals, but Richard Stockton College scored five straight times, as junior midfield Shelley Gibney (Shamong, NJ/Seneca) and freshman forward Keira Hines (Deptford, NJ/Deptford) each netted hat tricks as the Ospreys defeated New Jersey City University, 6-2, in a New Jersey Athletic Conference women’s soccer game at the Robert L. McNulty Memorial Soccer Field on Saturday.
The game was the 2009 season opener for both schools. Stockton (6-1-1) extends its unbeaten streak to six games, while the Gothic Knights (6-3) see their five-game winning streak snapped. Stockton leads the all-time series, 15-0. Stockton outshot NJCU, 30-19.
Gibney and Hines each collected seven points on three goals and one assist apiece. Senior midfielder Courtney Dougherty (Ocean City, NJ/Ocean City) also chipped in one assist for the Ospreys. Gibney and Hines had each entered the game without a goal this year.
Vargo scored once in each half for her second multiple-goal outing of the season, giving her seven markers on the year. Sophomore striker JULIA CASERES (Union, NJ/Union), the Division III national leader in goals with 15, attempted 10 shots but was unable to score. Freshman forward ASHLEY CUNHA (Edison, NJ/Edison) had her streak of consecutive games with at least two points to open her collegiate career snapped at eight.
Stockton rookie goalkeeper Maria Dorris (Mantua, NJ/Clearview) had four saves for the win. Junior keeper KELLY REILLY (Pennsville, NJ/Pennsville Memorial) made eight stops for the Knights.
Gibney put Stockton in front 7:46 into the opening half when she beat a defender on the right wing, before connecting on an angled shot into the left side of the net.
At 23:55 a Stockton foul led to an NJCU free kick, and Vargo buried her opportunity from 20 yards out on the top left of the box into the upper right corner to even the game at 1-1.
Stockton would gain a 2-1 lead at halftime as the Ospreys moved in front to stay at 39:19. Gibney raced down the right wing, centered a cross into the box, and Hines, who did not start, tapped home a short shot off a defender.
The RSC lead increased to 3-1 at 58:18. Gibney took a shot from the right wing, collected her own rebound just outside the endline, and sneaked a shot on a difficult angle into the goal.
Late in the second half, as the NJCU defense began to tire, the Ospreys put the game away with three goals in a span of 5:46. Hines scored on a breakaway at 77:22 off a thru ball from Dougherty. It was 5-1 at 81:41 when Hines fed a ball to Gibney, which she one-timed over a leaping keeper. Hines made it 6-1 at 83:08 as she won the ball from a defender, drove to the goal, eluded several other defenders and the keeper, before knocking a shot into the open net.
Vargo allowed NJCU to finish the game on a bright spot as she took advantage of another foul and from 20 yards out, rocketed a free kick which ricocheted in off the inside of the crossbar in the middle of the net.
NJCU is back in action on Wednesday, September 23 at 7:30 p.m., when it visits Kean University in Union, NJ for an NJAC contest. Stockton hosts Rutgers University-Camden that night at 7 p.m.
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