HOBOKEN—Stevens Institute of Technology got a wind-aided goal in the 60th minute then used its dominant defense to preserve the lead as the #11 ranked Ducks survived a challenge from New Jersey City University in a non-conference men’s soccer game of Division III Hudson County rivals, Wednesday night at the De Baun Athletic Complex.
Stevens, ranked 11th nationally by D3Soccer.com, posted its fifth consecutive shutout to extend its scoreless streak to 474:56 since September 19. The Ducks, who have allowed only four goals in 12 games, improved to 10-2 overall. Meanwhile, NJCU drops to 6-5-2 and have been shutout in all five losses.
It was the 14th meeting of the Hudson County opponents, and 11 have been decided by one goal or less, including each of the last five contests since 2001. Stevens leads the series, 9-4-1; it was the first meeting between the schools since September 3, 2006.
Sophomore keeper MANNY LOJO (Clark, NJ/Union Catholic) made nine saves, including seven in the second half when the Ducks had a 12-4 shots advantage. Stevens outshot NJCU 20-9 on the evening.
On an extremely windy evening, with gusts blowing in off the Hudson River, the only goal of the night occurred with Stevens attacking while the Gothic Knight defense was facing the direction of the river. At 59:53 of the second half, junior midfielder Nolan Sandberg (Round Lake Park, IL/Grayslake Central) ripped a shot that bounced high off the crossbar, after tracking down a loose ball 15 yards out on the right side of the box. The wind helped keep the ball in play, and senior forward Terrence Johnson (Slidell, LA/Pemberton) used his body to redirect the rebound into the net for his sixth goal of the year.
From there, Stevens used its defensive pressure to make the score hold up for the final 30 minutes of action. The Ducks had a 9-1 margin in corner kicks for the game.
Each team had a pair of solid first half scoring chances. At 42:40, Lojo made a solid stop of a shot by Stevens’ freshman midfielder Cody Bovino (Garnerville, NY/North Rockland).
NJCU sophomore forward WALTER AVANS (Roselle Park, NJ/Union Catholic) missed a good first half opportunity high while Stevens junior keeper Zach Carr (Carmel, IN/Carmel) stopped a solid chance by NJCU sophomore midfielder DIEGO PORTILLO (Bayonne, NJ/Bayonne). Carr made six saves.
NJCU will return to the pitch on Saturday, October 10 at 2 p.m. when it hosts The College of New Jersey at the Robert L. McNulty Memorial Soccer Field in a New Jersey Athletic Conference game. The contest will be played in conjunction with NJCU’s Green and Gold Day events. Prior to kickoff, NJCU will honor the 1966 men’s soccer team—which went 9-1-1—and will rededicate the new McNulty Field in a ceremony involving family of the late legendary coach.
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