Montclair, N.J. (11/4/12) – The Montclair State University women's soccer team claimed the 2012 NJAC Championship on penalty kicks Sunday afternoon against Kean University after both teams battled to a 0-0 tie.
The top seeded Red Hawks (15-1-3) earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament after advancing, 5-3, on penalty kicks. The Cougars stand with an 11-5-4 overall record and await the announcement of the ECAC Metro Tournament bracket on Monday. The championship is the second for the MSU program and first since 2004.
This is the second time this week that both teams battled in a shootout period. Kean advanced in the first round of the tournament past The College of New Jersey, 3-0, while MSU pushed past Richard Stockton College, 4-2, in the semifinals.
The Red Hawks converted all five of their penalty kick opportunities by Martina Landeka, Brittany Cesares, Melissa Koster, Claire Midili, and Francesca Gibson. Red Hawk keeper Gina Policastro stopped the first Cougar kick, before Kean was able to convert kicks from Kristen Hager, Angie Lopez, and Carla Vitola. The first stop proved to be the difference.
Rookie KC Nunez stopped eight shots in 110 minutes of action while Policastro recorded five saves in the shutout.