By Mike Ballard
RAPTOR OF THE WEEK
Senior Brett Mattei has had an outstanding year to cap a tremendous career at Rutgers-Camden, and the Scarlet Raptors’ left fullback turned in another strong outing in his team’s one game last week. Mattei teamed with fellow senior backs Brandon Bond, Tom Blumenstein and Tom Guida as the Raptors blanked the nation’s eighth-ranked team, Ramapo College, by a 5-0 score Oct. 26 to clinch the second seed for the New Jersey Athletic Conference playoffs. Mattei, who blends tenacious marking abilities with the knack to push forward and play a key role on the attack, has contributed three assists this season. Entering the NJAC playoffs, he has appeared in 66 games during his four-year career, including 58 in the last three years after recovering from a foot injury which limited him to eight games as a freshman. He has one goal and six assists in his career.
MEN'S SOCCER (14-4-1/6-2-1 NJAC)
Sat., Nov. 5 NJAC Finals, TBD at highest remaining seed
One big win over Ramapo set up another showdown with the same team in the wild world of New Jersey Athletic Conference men’s soccer competition.
Senior midfielder Baris Uslu (Giresun, Turkey/Triton Regional) scored a pair of goals, including the eventual game-winning tally 1:19 into the contest, and freshman forward Andrew Dorsey (Mt. Laurel, NJ/The King’s Christian School) collected a pair of assists as Rutgers-Camden blanked No. 8 nationally-ranked Ramapo College, 5-0, in the final regular-season NJAC game for both teams Oct. 26 in Camden.
The victory helped Rutgers-Camden clinch the second seed in the conference tournament, while placing Ramapo as the third seed. The Roadrunners outlasted Montclair State, 2-1, in their First Round NJAC game Oct. 29, setting up a return trip to Rutgers-Camden for a conference semifinal battle Nov. 2.
The Oct. 26 victory over Ramapo marked the second time this season Rutgers-Camden has defeated the nation’s No. 8 team. On Sept. 17, the Raptors posted a 4-3 overtime win over then-No. 8 Richard Stockton College.
Uslu gave the Scarlet Raptors an early lead following a long chip to the top of the box by senior back Tom Blumenstein (Audubon, NJ/Paul VI). The ball was played in quick fashion from senior forward Kevin Ridgway (Cinnaminson, NJ/Cinnaminson) to sophomore midfielder Pat Baldiserra (Milmay, NJ/Buena Regional), who fed Uslu for a header at the far left post. It was Uslu’s seventh goal of the year and his third game-winning tally.
Ridgway added another goal at 27:21when he headed in a corner kick by Dorsey to the far post. It was Ridgway’s fifth goal of the season.
Ridgway, along with senior back Brandon Bond (Cinnaminson, NJ/Cinnaminson), both made the 78th appearance of their careers, tying the program record set by another former Cinnaminson High School player, Chad Zimecki (2000-2003). Blumenstein, meanwhile, played in his 77th career game.
In the second half, Uslu added another goal at 57:00, off a cross to the far right post by Dorsey.
The Raptors made is a 4-0 game at 62:33 when sophomore forward Rodney Guishard (Mays Landing, NJ/Oakcrest) scored following a long pass up the left touchline by freshman forward Andrew Simmons (Winslow, NJ/Winslow Township). It was the fifth goal of the year for Guishard.
The final goal came on a brilliant individual effort by sophomore back Patrick Dougherty (Pittsgrove, NJ/Schalick), who carried the ball on a long run up the middle, weaving through several Roadrunners, before placing his first goal of the season inside the right post.
Rutgers-Camden held an 11-9 advantage in shots, while Ramapo had a 9-4 advantage in corner kicks.
Raptor junior keeper David Cunningham (Voorhees, NJ/Eastern Regional) made four saves in 69:40 of action. He combined with sophomore Brent Grunow (Estell Manor, NJ/Buena Regional), who made one save in 20:20 and batted a Roadrunner penalty kick over the bar, as the Raptors notched their fifth team shutout.
For Ramapo, junior goalie Patrick Jagodzinski had three saves and allowed all five goals in 74:15. Freshman keeper Michael Kull had no saves while playing the final 15:45.
WOMEN'S SOCCER (12-8/5-4 NJAC)
NJAC Playoffs First Round
The Rutgers-Camden women’s soccer season ended with a score that was all too familiar to the Lady Raptors this season.
For the eighth time this year, Rutgers-Camden was involved in a 1-0 game, but this time it was Kean University that scored the only goal as the third-ranked Cougars eliminated the sixth-seeded Lady Raptors in a New Jersey Athletic Conference First Round playoff game in Union Oct. 29.
Rutgers-Camden, which went 5-3 over the season in 1-0 games, closed its campaign with a 12-8 record. Kean, 11-6-1, advanced to Tuesday’s semifinal game at #2 seed Rowan University, beginning at 7 p.m.
Kean senior midfielder Cara Cornett scored the lone goal of the game at 58:47, following a pass to the left side of the box by junior forward Heather Anzivino. Cornett tucked a shot inside the left post for her second goal of the year and her first game-winning tally. It was the seventh assist by Anzivino.
Kean’s victory reversed a 1-0 loss the Cougars suffered at Rutgers-Camden on Oct. 15. Not only did the Raptors play eight 1-0 games this season, they played 11 games overall which were decided by one goal, including eight straight from Oct. 8 through the season-ending game Saturday night.
Although Kean had the opportunity to take an early first-half lead, the Cougars hit a penalty kick wide right and the game remained scoreless until Cornett scored with 31:13 remaining. In the final 90 seconds of regulation, the Lady Raptors managed four shots, but Kean held off the attack to post its win.
Kean outshot Rutgers-Camden, 17-14, and held a 6-5 edge in corner kicks. Cougar senior goalie Jessica Kogel made four saves and Kean added a second-half backsave to register the shutout.
Lady Raptor goalie Therese Comella (Delran, NJ/Delran) made six saves as she finished her outstanding sophomore season by playing every minute in goal and posting a 12-8 record and a 1.00 goals-against average, allowing 20 goals in 20 games. Comella set the individual single-season and the career shutout record with 10 shutouts this year. Those 10 shutouts also tied the team single-season mark set in 2003.
The game marked the final Rutgers-Camden contest for senior midfielder Katlyn Pagaduan (Somerdale, NJ/Sterling), who extended her program career record to 74 games played. It also marked the end of the Rutgers-Camden careers for midfielders Erin Boiler (Medford, NJ/Holy Cross), Kate Machion (Blackwood, NJ/Paul VI) and Sarah Pacella (Collingswood, NJ/Collingswood).
Earlier in the week, the Lady Raptors qualified for the NJAC playoffs, posting a win at Ramapo Oct. 26 by their familiar 1-0 score. Rutgers-Camden received a second-half goal from junior midfielder Katie O’Connor (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township).
After a scoreless first half, O’Connor notched her fourth goal of the season and third game-winning goal at 65:22. It was assisted by Boiler and Pagaduan, starting with a restart by Boiler.
The game marked the 73rd career appearance for Pagaduan, setting a program record. She had been tied for most career appearances at 72 with Nicole Lauri (2000-2003).
The victory was the 10th shutout of the season, tying the team record set in 2003. All 10 of those shutouts have been recorded by Comella, who made three saves in earning the win.
The Raptors outshot the Roadrunners, 8-7, while Ramapo held a 6-5 edge in corner kicks.
VOLLEYBALL (2-18/0-7 NJAC)
Sophomore outside hitter Julie Grochowski (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown) set a single-match school record with 40 kills, but the Rutgers-Camden volleyball team lost its final match of the season to Chestnut Hill College Oct. 26 in Philadelphia.
Chestnut Hill won, 30-26, 15-30, 17-30, 30-27 and 15-10 as it rallied from a 2-1 deficit in games.
Rutgers-Camden closes the season at 2-18, snapping its two-match winning streak.
Grochowski’s 40 kills shattered her own record of 28, set Oct. 20 at Immaculata University. She also added 10 service aces, one block, 30 digs and two assists.
Junior setter Karla Maisto (Voorhees, NJ/Eastern Regional) collected 38 assists, nine aces, eight digs, four blocks and seven kills, while freshman outside hitter Nikki Cosico (Sewell, NJ/Washington Township) had eight kills, nine assists, six aces, 21 digs and one block.
Sophomore outside hitter Yara Khalil (Medford, NJ/Shawnee) had 17 digs, two blocks and two kills, while junior defensive specialist Rosevic Santos (Jersey City, NJ/Abraham Lincoln) notched 11 digs, one ace, one assist and one kill. Sophomore defensive specialist Lilliana Quintana (Camden, NJ/Pennsauken Tech) collected six digs and one service ace.
For the season, Maisto set a record with 88 service aces, breaking Grochowski’s mark of 52 from 2004. Grochowski also added her name to second in three categories, behind her own school marks set in 2004. She had 262 kills (274 is the mark from last season), 893 total attacks (1,120) and 354 digs (375). Maisto’s 222 assists were third on the single-season charts. The record was 368 by Clare Li in 2003.
MEN (8K): 1. The College of New Jersey, 17; 2. Rowan University, 52; 3. Richard Stockton College, 89; 4. Ramapo College, 102; 5. Kean University, 143; 6. William Paterson University, 187; 7. Rutgers-Camden, 191; 8. New Jersey City University, 202.
Leading runner: Matt Randal (The College of New Jersey), 25:16.00.
Leading Rutgers-Camden runner: Travis Stewart, 27:10.40
WOMEN (5K): 1. The College of New Jersey, 15; 2. Ramapo College, 81; 3. Richard Stockton College, 89; 4. Rowan University, 97; 5. Kean University, 140; 6. William Paterson University, 147; 7. Rutgers-Camden, 195; 8. New Jersey City University, 203.
Leading runner: Kristen Pogorzelski (The College of New Jersey), 22:47.10.
Leading Rutgers-Camden runner: Joelle Diener, 24:30.00.
Leading runner: Kevin Bunt (Gwynedd-Mercy College), 28:28.57
Leading Rutgers-Camden runner: Travis Stewart, 29:26.24.
Rutgers-Camden senior Joelle Diener (Rickenbach, Switzerland/Kantonsschule, Olten) finished 13th overall to earn Second Team honors at the New Jersey Athletic Conference Cross Country Championships Oct. 29 at Richard Stockton College.
Running the first 6K women’s race of the season the regular-season races are all 5K events Diener posted a time of 24:30.00, the second-fastest 6K time in program history. It was the second consecutive year that Diener earned All-NJAC Second Team honors at the conference meet.
Scarlet Raptors freshman Travis Stewart (Runnemede, NJ/Triton Regional), meanwhile, finished 24th in the men’s race (27:10.00) with the third-fastest 8K time in the history of the Rutgers-Camden cross country program.
Rutgers-Camden finished seventh out of eight teams in both races, which were won by The College of New Jersey. TCNJ had the top nine finishers in the 64-runner field of the women’s race, led by Kristen Pogorzelski (22:47.10), on its way to 15 points. Second-place Ramapo College had 81, while Rutgers-Camden had 195.
In the 66-runner men’s race, six of the top seven finishers were from TCNJ, led by Matt Randal (25:16.00). The Lions had 17 points in their first-place finish, while second-place Rowan had 52. Rutgers-Camden finished with 191.
On the women’s side, Lady Raptors junior Rachel McCormick (Blue Anchor, NJ/Winslow Township) finished second on the team (27:43.40) and 38th overall. She was followed by senior Tanishia Greene (Georgetown, SC/Georgetown), freshman Imani Hafiz (Franklinville, NJ/Delsea Regional) and senior Carmen Zimmitt (Woodstown, NJ/Woodstown), who placed 62-64, respectively. That trio, which will be part of the Lady Raptors’ basketball team in a few weeks, posted 6K times of 36:22.60 by Greene, 36:23.30 by Hafiz and 38:18.80 by Zimmitt.
In the men’s race, Raptors senior Chris McGowan (Barrington, NJ/Gloucester Catholic) finished 41st overall (28:46.50), while senior Andrew Silipino (Hammonton, NJ/Hammonton) was 55th (45:59.50), freshman Darryl Mendillo (Galloway, NJ/Absegami) was 58th (46:19.20), junior Frank Tinney (Blackwood, NJ/Paul VI) finished 61st (47:06.40), sophomore Thomas Ward (Mt. Ephraim, NJ/Audubon) was 62nd (47:30.70) and freshman Nick Eric (Port St. Lucie, FL/Fort Pierce Central) finished 66th (49:18.90).
1. Rutgers-Camden, 330; 2. Swarthmore, 336; 3. Neumann, 339; 4. Haverford, 343; DQ Richard Stockton.
Individual medalist: Brian Mason (Rutgers-Camden), 79.
Rutgers-Camden scores: Mason 79, Matt Tomasic 80, Joe Zulli 84, John Goff 87, Eric Welsh 100; Rob Burgess (alternate) 92.
The Rutgers University-Camden golf team shot a 330, led by senior medalist Brian Mason (Bridgeton, NJ/Bridgeton) as it captured the championship of its own Scarlet Raptors Fall Invitational Oct. 28.
The invitational was played at the Par 72, 6,496-yard Town & Country Golf Links.
Mason finished with a 36 over the back nine to finish as the medalist, one stroke ahead of junior teammate Matt Tomasic (Berlin, NJ/St. Augustine Prep), who shot an 80. Finishing third was Swarthmore College freshman Tai Wai David Lau (Hong Kong, China/The Hotchkiss School), with an 81.
Swarthmore finished second as a team, posting a 336 score.
The final invitational of the season pushed the Scarlet Raptors’ overall record to 44-41-1 for the fall competition, marking the fourth consecutive semester Rutgers-Camden has finished above .500.
Mason’s 79 marked the fourth time in six fall outings that he shot in the 70s, while Tomasic barely missed his fifth invitational in the 70s.
The Raptors also received a round of 84 from junior Joe Zulli (Bellmawr, NJ/Paul VI), an 87 from senior John Goff (Haddon Heights, NJ/Paul VI) and a 100 from freshman Eric Welsh (Cinnaminson, NJ/Cinnaminson). Playing as an alternate, junior Rob Burgess (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic) shot a 92.
Tomasic finished the fall with a team-low 79.0 average, while Mason finished a close second on the team with a 79.7 average.
Women's Club Eights Rutgers-Camden 42nd of 45 (16:26.55)
Women’s Open Fours with Cox Rutgers-Camden 16th of 37 (16:58.45)
Men’s Open Fours with Cox Rutgers-Camden 42nd of 44 (17:05.14)
The Rutgers-Camden women’s crew team turned in a fine performance as it competed in two races at the Head of the Schuylkill Regatta Oct. 29 in Philadelphia.
The Lady Raptors’ Women’s Open Fours with Cox finished 16th out of 37 teams to beat over half of the boats in the competition. Rutgers-Camden posted a time of 16:58.45 as it outraced many boats from Division I programs. Members of that boat were junior coxswain Renee Martin (Mays Landing, NJ/Oakcrest), senior stroke seat Nicole Corl (Sewell, NJ/Gloucester Catholic), sophomore 3-seat Laura Williams (Cherry Hill, NJ/home schooled), sophomore 2-seat Monica Fleming (Collingswood, NJ/Collingswood), and sophomore bow Traci Arnold (Pitman, NJ/Pitman).
“The Women's 4 rowed the best fall race ever for one of our crews,” said Rutgers-Camden head coach Jamie Stack, whose program was upgraded to the varsity level only last fall. “They beat 21 boats! The Women's 8 also rowed its fastest time in a head race.”
That Rutgers-Camden boat posted a time of 16:26.55 to finish 42nd out of 45 boats in the Women’s Club Eights. Members of that boat included sophomore coxswain Michelle Sanchirico (Mt. Laurel, NJ/Bishop Eustace), senior 8-seat Kristin Szostak (Gaithersburg, MD/Gaithersburg), junior 7 seat Cynthia Burt (West Deptford, NJ/West Deptford), freshman 6-seat Rachel Negro (Audubon, NJ/Paul VI), freshman 5-seat Gina Williams (Cherry Hill, NJ/home schooled), sophomore 4-seat Holly Shelly (Erial, NJ/Timber Creek), junior 3-seat Jen Culligan (Willingboro, NJ/Holy Cross), freshman 2-seat Liz Schnepp (Tuckerton, NJ/Pinelands Regional) and freshman bow Kenya Sandhagen (Los Banos, CA/Central Catholic).
The Rutgers-Camden men’s club team also competed in the regatta, which was the last race of the fall for the Scarlet Raptors. The Men’s Open Fours with Cox finished 42nd out of 44 boats in a time of 17:05.14. That team consisted of junior coxswain B.J. Ochal (Cherry Hill, NJ/Camden Catholic), senior stroke Steve Witczak (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown), junior 3-seat Anthony Bertolotti (Williamstown, NJ/Williamstown), freshman 2-seat Nick Fresolone (Sicklerville, NJ/Timber Creek) and junior bow Michael Englisch (Cherry Hill, NJ/Cherry Hill West).