Women’s Soccer notches their fourth shutout win of the season behind Bergan’s first career hat trick

Sarah Bergan scans the field. Bergan recorded her first career hat trick against Penn State Berks. - Photo via Rowan Athletics

Rowan women’s soccer defeated Penn State Berks in dominant fashion on Friday, Sept. 15 by a final score of 6-0. Penn State Berks benched their starting goalie during halftime. Starting midfielder Sarah Bergan led the way with a hat trick, her first three goals of the season.

“I do not even have words,” Bergan said. “It was just a crazy moment and experience for me. Our mindset coming into the game was to score as many goals as possible. Honestly, I did not even realize they switched goalies in the second half.”

Head Coach Scott Leacott was impressed with his starting midfielder throughout the game. He was especially impressed with her first goal of the season.

“I think her first goal was really impressive,” Coach Leacott said. “Ava [Morales] and Sarah [Bergan] are great holding midfielders. I feel like they did not attack as much. I think we were lacking in that area last season. On her first goal, she attacked in the box, which was a good sign for moving forward. Normally, she would not do that.”

Bergan recorded her second goal on a penalty kick after being fouled by a Nittany Lion defender. She is now one for two all-time in her career on penalty kicks.

“Her second goal was a penalty kick. She is a good shooter, so I felt like she was going to make it,” Coach Leacott said. “We had struggles last year on penalty kicks. I was very happy to see that she buried it.”

Another standout performance for the Profs was Calista Burke, who produced a shutout. Burke previously struggled in the Profs’ most recent game against Swarthmore College, where she gave up two goals. That was her first time giving up a goal at home since the beginning of the 2021 season.

“There were not many adjustments we made in between games when it came to Calista,” Leacott said. “I think we did not face much adversity last year. She did not face a lot of adversity last year either. She is not used to giving up a lot of goals. I think it made her a little angry. When she gets angry, I feel like she gets a little more focused.”

Her teammates had confidence in her coming into the game, and she rewarded them with a bounce-back game.

“She is awesome, just the best,” Bergan said. “There is literally no one else we would want back there.”

This was a very important win for the Profs, especially coming off their previous performance against Swarthmore. Additionally, this was their last game before the first New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) matchup of the season for the team.

“It was important after coming off a tie,” Bergan said. “It was important to have momentum start to build with the NJACs coming up. We up.”

Coach Leacott’s squad has had a lot of non-conference games on the schedule so far. The long-time coach of the Profs believes these games helped prepare them for NJAC games, although he was not that impressed by the competition.

“I think the way the schedule is set up puts a lot of pressure on our team,” Coach Leacott said. “We have played four games in eight days. We won three and tied one. I usually view ties as losses, but the nature of the last tie made it better than a loss. They also played Wednesday before the game. I just do not think they were ready for that. They are traditionally a very good team. This year they just have a lot of freshmen, inexperienced.”

Coach Leacott is looking for similar results this Saturday when the Rowan Profs take on the Kean Cougars.

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