Profs look to fly high once again after shaky start to season, NJCU up next

Junior back Maddie Williscroft goes against an opposing attack last year. She scored the winning goal against The College of New Jersey in the NJAC Championship last season - Photo Editor/Amanda Palma

The Rowan women’s soccer team booked a flight early on last season and they lifted off right out of the gate, winning 14 games in a row including one tie in a 15-game span. It seemed almost like a game set on beginner-mode, with the scores ending 11-0, 9-0, 5-0, and so on. Unfortunately for the Profs this year, the difficulty level — at least offensively to begin the year — has been switched to hard.

During that 15-game streak last year, the brown and gold outscored their opponents 57-3. Now, flip the script to today. Rowan has started 2-1-1, and was unable to have the ball strike the back of the net in regulation until their fourth and most recent game against the University of Mary Washington during the UMW Soccer Classic. It was junior forward Cathryn McCarry who scored at the 32-minute mark, finally getting the Profs on the board during the first 90 minutes of a contest. Freshman midfielder/forward Lauren Wood and senior team captain Melissa Kelly chimed in with goals of their own in the second half.

The team snagged two much-needed victories from the tournament, but have limited time to enjoy their stay in Glassboro.

The Profs have yet to have a game played at home. This week, they kicked off a week-long, three-game journey on the road on Wednesday. First up was Marymount University, a squad that is new to the schedule for Rowan. It didn’t take long for this matchup to get out of hand, as the brown and gold headed to the locker room with a commanding 4-0 lead. Junior midfielder Sami Pagnani took control of the score board with two first half goals. Senior captain Shannon Reardigan and sophomore midfielder Darah Wagner had one apiece. The Profs would add another goal to the stat sheet, completing their second consecutive shutout in regulation, and their third including a 1-0 overtime victory last week against St. Mary’s College of Maryland.

Rowan has completely dominated opponents in goals and shot attempts, outscoring teams 9-1 thus far in the young season, while outshooting them 84-20 in the process. More impressively is the fact that 44 of those 84 total attempts have been taken on-goal, showing that the brown and gold have been able to penetrate opposing defenses and create opportunities. Lately, it has been clear that these opportunities have been taken advantage of.

New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) play begins on Saturday with Rowan traveling to New Jersey City University, a team that fell to the hands of the Profs last year, 5-0.

The NJAC is chockfull of talent, as Rowan placed second in the division that featured six teams who finished over .500 in the conference and overall. The competition didn’t faze the squad last year, though, as the brown and gold won their second NJAC title in as many years. Led by coach Scott Leacott, Glassboro has been able to witness quite a winning culture, as the 19th-year frontman has a 253-71-26 overall record with the team. Under him, it looks like the team might soon be able to soar high once again.

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