By Mike Ballard
RAPTOR OF THE WEEK
Sophomore back Brittney Mancine has played a key role in the amazing defensive success of the Rutgers-Camden women’s soccer team. Along with fellow backs Kelley Murphy, Michelle Bisceglia and Jenna Perez, Mancine has led a defense which has posted nine shutouts, anchored by goalie Therese Comella. Last week the Raptors posted 1-0 home victories over both William Paterson and Kean, running their streak to four straight shutouts, including three consecutive 1-0 wins. Mancine also has contributed four assists for the 10-5 Raptors.
WOMEN'S SOCCER (10-5/4-3 NJAC)
Close games and shutout victories continue to be the norm for the Rutgers-Camden women’s soccer team, which posted a pair of 1-0 wins last week in New Jersey Athletic Conference home games against William Paterson (Oct. 12) and Kean (Oct. 15).
Junior midfielder Katie O’Connor (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) provided the offense and the Lady Raptors posted a record-setting shutout behind sophomore goalkeeper Therese Comella (Delran, NJ/Delran) in the week-ending victory over Kean. It was the fourth straight shutout win for Rutgers-Camden. It also was the third consecutive 1-0 victory and the fourth 1-0 triumph overall this season for the Lady Raptors, both program records. The previous mark of three 1-0 wins was accomplished in both 1999 and 2003.
The shutout also was a record-setting one for Comella, who now owns nine shutouts in her young career, breaking the tie she had for the school record with Kristen Stewart (1998-2001). She also extended her own single-season school record to nine shutouts, making seven saves, and ran her consecutive shutout minute string in goal to 363:20. The school record of 367:50 was set by Tracy Stonaker in 2004.
Rutgers-Camden has posted six shutouts in its last seven games, with the only blemish coming in a 4-0 loss to The College of New Jersey, currently ranked No. 2 nationally.
In a hard-fought NJAC battle, neither team managed many good shots despite both having some offensive chances. Kean held a 5-4 edge in shots for the first half and a 13-6 margin in the game. The Cougars also had both of the game’s corner kicks.
In the second half, with both teams searching for the elusive goal, O’Connor stole the ball near midfield on Kean’s defensive half and sprinted in for a one-on-one against Cougar senior goalie Jessica Kogel. O’Connor lofted a high shot that tucked just under the crossbar for her third goal of the season. It was her second game-winning goal. That was all Comella needed, with the help of stellar play by her fullbacks, junior tri-captain Kelley Murphy (Haddon Heights, NJ/Haddon Heights), junior Michelle Bisceglia (Franklinville, NJ/Delsea Regional), sophomore Brittney Mancine (Mt. Laurel, NJ/Lenape) and freshman Jenna Perez (Deptford, NJ/Deptford).
Earlier in the week, Comella collected four saves to notch her single-season school record eighth shutout and senior midfielder Katlyn Pagaduan (Somerdale, NJ/Sterling) scored the game’s only goal in the 1-0 win over William Paterson.
On a cold, windy night, the Lady Raptors scored the lone goal at 25:03 when Pagaduan took a shot from 20 yards out on the top right side of the box. Her shot grazed off the outstretched leg of a Pioneer defender attempting to block it, and deflected inside the right post. It was the second goal of the season for the Lady Raptor tri-captain, and her first game-winning tally.
The rest of the night belonged to Comella and the Raptor defense. Comella broke the single-season program mark she shared with Tracy Winter (2002) and tied Stewart’s career record, which fell later in the week.
Comella received outstanding help again from her fullback quartet Murphy, Mancine, Bisceglia and Perez, who helped Comella post a pair of shutouts in two games the previous week to earn honors as the NJAC Defensive Player of the Week and the Div. III ECAC Metro Goaltender of the Week on Oct. 10 and 11, respectively.
For William Paterson, junior goalie Meaghan Koppel made four saves.
Rutgers-Camden outshot William Paterson, 9-5, and held a 4-1 edge in corner kicks.
MEN'S SOCCER (11-3-1/3-2-1 NJAC)
Rainy weather and unplayable field conditions washed out the Scarlet Raptors’ scheduled game at William Paterson University Oct. 12, forcing the New Jersey Athletic Conference game to be rescheduled to Oct. 17. When the Raptors finally played a game, after a week-long layoff, they played overtime in a 1-1 tie at Kean University Oct. 15.
Sophomore midfielder Pat Baldiserra (Milmay, NJ/Buena Regional) scored a first-half goal for Rutgers-Camden and freshman back Thomas Azydzik countered in the second half for Kean University as the two tied in New Jersey Athletic Conference action in Union.
In a foul-filled game, Kean collected 24 fouls, four yellow cards and two red cards, while Rutgers-Camden had 16 fouls, two yellows and one red. Kean played a man down for the final 32 minutes after three players were ejected at 78:01, including two Cougars.
The Scarlet Raptors, who hadn’t played since Oct. 8 due to a rainout, took a 1-0 lead at 15:05 when senior back Brett Mattei (Turnersville, NJ/Washington Township) sent a pass into the left side of the box that Baldiserra fired past Cougar freshman keeper Dylan Hastings.
In the second half, Azydzik picked up a loose ball inside the box and found the back of the net to notch the tying goal with 25:10 remaining in regulation.
The Scarlet Raptors held a 24-11 advantage in shots, including a 9-2 margin in overtime. They had several opportunities in the final seconds of regulation and the second overtime, as point-blank shots hit off the crossbar with time winding down.
Hastings made 11 saves for Kean, while junior goalie David Cunningham (Voorhees, NJ/Eastern Regional) had three for Rutgers-Camden.
VOLLEYBALL (0-16/0-6 NJAC)
The Rutgers University-Camden volleyball team won its first game of the season, but the Lady Raptors dropped a marathon match at the 12th annual Gothic Knight Invitational at New Jersey City University Oct. 15.
The Raptors finished last in the four-team field, being swept by both host NJCU (30-15, 30-12, 30-15) and William Paterson University (30-6, 30-13, 30-18). Sandwiched between those losses was a tough defeat against the College of St. Elizabeth in which the Raptors lost 30-27, split a pair of 32-30 games and lost the final game, 30-21. The Lady Raptors’ 32-30 win in the second game against St. Elizabeth was their first game victory this season. They have been swept in every other match, 3-0.
New Jersey City swept through the tournament field with three straight wins in each match to capture its second consecutive Gothic Knight Invitational title. NJCU sophomore middle blocker Lizzelle Cintron captured tournament Most Valuable Player honors.
The All-Tournament team included Rutgers-Camden sophomore outside hitter Julie Grochowski (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown). Grochowski earned a berth on the all-tourney team for the second straight year.
In their loss to NJCU, the Raptors received 11 kills, 11 digs, two blocks and one service ace from Grochowski, while junior setter Karla Maisto (Voorhees, NJ/Eastern Regional) had 15 assists, one block, one ace and two kills.
In the loss to St. Elizabeth, Grochowski had 27 kills, four aces, 16 digs and seven blocks. Her 27 kills tied Joy Silver's single-match program record, also set against St. Elizabeth on Oct. 19, 2002. Maisto set a program single-match record with 43 assists and added two kills, three aces, three digs and three blocks. She broke the assist record of 41 by Claire Li against Keystone College Oct. 2, 2003. Freshman Nikki Cosico (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) notched 11 kills, one assist, six aces, 23 digs and one block, while sophomore Bianca Skvirsky (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill West) added three kills, one assist, two aces and 11 digs. Sophomore Yara Khalil (Medford, NJ/Shawnee) added one kill and six digs.
In the loss to William Paterson, the Raptors received seven kills, three aces and 11 digs from Grochowski, while Maisto had one kill, 11 assists, two aces and two digs. Cosico added one kill, one assist, one ace and 11 digs. Skvirsky had eight digs and three kills, while sophomore Lilliana Quintana (Camden, NJ/Pennsauken Tech) added three digs. Freshman Ebony Mosley (Camden, NJ/Camden Academy Charter) added one ace and one dig.
Earlier in the week, the Raptors lost home New Jersey Athletic Conference matches against both Richard Stockton College (Oct. 13) and Kean University (Oct. 11).
Against Stockton, the Raptors watched freshman outside hitter Amanda Burkhart collect seven kills, six service aces and 10 digs and freshman setter Christine Aletras had 20 assists, three kills, one ace, 10 digs and two assisted blocks to power the Ospreys to a three-game sweep over Rutgers-Camden, 30-13, 30-17 and 30-13.
Stockton also received six kills and 13 digs from senior outside hitter Whitney Verduin, while senior setter Kate Hahn notched five kills, two aces, 14 digs, two solo blocks and two assisted blocks.
Clinging to a 14-12 lead in the first game, Stockton rattled off 11 consecutive points to spark the three-game sweep.
For Rutgers-Camden, Grochowski notched 14 kills, three blocks, 17 digs and two aces, while Maisto collected 20 assists, two aces, three digs and one kill. Cosico had 13 digs and six kills and Mosley added two aces and five digs.
The week opened with a loss to Kean as freshman setter Jamie Lee collected 32 assists, nine digs, two aces and one kill to power the Cougars over Rutgers-Camden, 30-16, 30-17 and 30-23.
The Cougars jumped to a quick 4-0 lead and never trailed while winning the opening game. They bounced back from a 3-2 deficit to take the lead for good at 4-3 in the second game, and they broke a 6-6 tie by scoring five of the next six points on their way to winning the final game.
For the Lady Raptors, Maisto notched four kills, 13 assists, two aces, six digs and two blocks. Grochowski collected 11 kills, 13 digs and two blocks, while Cosico had two kills, three assists, three aces and 16 digs.
MEN (8K): 1. College Misericordia, 53; 2. Catholic University, 75; 3. PSU Club, 83; 4. Cabrini College, 118; 5. Holy Family College, and University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, 129; 7. Rutgers-Camden, 153; 8. Wesley College, 186; 9. Cheyney University, 232. Incomplete: Chestnut Hill College, Eastern University, Gwynedd-Mercy College, Williamson Trade School.
Leading runner: Kevin Bunt (Gwynedd-Mercy College), 28:28.57
Leading Rutgers-Camden runner: Travis Stewart, 29:26.24
WOMEN (5K): 1. Gwynedd-Mercy College, 50; 2. College Misericordia, 51; 3. University of the Sciences in Philadelphia, 65; PSU Club, 80; 5. Holy Family College, 110; 6. Immaculate College, 156; 7. Cheyney University, 195. Incomplete: Rutgers-Camden, Cabrini College, Chestnut Hill College, Eastern University, Wesley College.
Leading runner: Amy Bower, College Misericordia, 18:43.12
Leading Rutgers-Camden runner: Joelle Diener, 21:02.74
Sat., Nov. 5 at ECAC Championships W: 11 a.m.
Rutgers- Camden senior Joelle Diener (Rickenbach, Switzerland/Kantonsschule, Olten) finished third and Scarlet Raptors freshman Travis Stewart (Runnemede, NJ/Triton Regional) finished sixth in their respective races at the Cabrini College Invitational Oct. 15 at Fairmount Park in Philadelphia.
Stewart posted the best time of his young collegiate career with a 29:26.24 clocking in the 8K race, which was won by Kevin Bunt of Gwynedd-Mercy College in 28:28.57. A total of 72 runners competed in the men’s race, in which the Scarlet Raptors finished seventh out of nine complete teams with 153 points. There were four incomplete teams in the race won by College Misericordia with 53 points.
In the women’s race, Diener posted a 21:02.74 clocking to finish sixth out of 64 runners at the 5K distance. The individual race was won by Amy Bower of College Misericordia (18:43.12), while Gwynedd-Mercy College won the team title with 50 points. There were seven complete teams. Rutgers-Camden failed to field a complete team, having only four runners.
In the men’s race, Raptors senior Chris McGowan (Barrington, NJ/Gloucester Catholic) finished 18th overall (31:31.91), while freshman Darryl Mendillo (Galloway, NJ/Absegami) was 47th (35:35.17) to finish third for Rutgers-Camden. Rounding out the scoring for the Scarlet Raptors were junior Matt Calloway (Blackwood, NJ/Highland Regional) and senior Brian Jakubowski (Audubon, NJ/Audubon), who finished 57th and 59th, respectively, in times of 37:06.08 and 37:28.92.
On the women’s side, junior Rachel McCormick (Blue Anchor, NJ/Winslow Township) and seniors Carmen Zimmitt (Woodstown, NJ/Woodstown) and Tanishia Greene (Georgetown, SC/Georgetown) rounded out the Lady Raptors’ squad. McCormick finished 35th (25:17.15), while Zimmitt was 47th (28:27.41) and Greene was 56th (30:34.57).