Senior All-American Emily Sideris sends her shot through traffic that would provide the lone goal of the day. (PHOTO BY Marcello Cutti, Jr./SMI)
Genovese earns Most Outstanding Player honors after seven save shutout
BROOKVILLE, N.Y. (November 22, 2014) – Second-seeded Stonehill College, ranked fifth in this week's Penn Monto/National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division II poll, captured its second Northeast-10 Conference Field Hockey Tournament Championship in program history with a 1-0 triumph at top-seeded and No. 4-ranked LIU Post at Bethpage Federal Credit Union Stadium this afternoon.
Stonehill (17-3, 9-2 NE-10), which was ranked first in the most recent NCAA Division II North Regional rankings released earlier this week, has likely made that ranking stand and earn the top seed for the upcoming NCAA Tournament to receive a bye to the national semifinal round which be played as part of the NCAA Division II Fall Festival in Louisville, Kentucky, December 4-6. LIU Post (16-3, 10-1 NE-10), ranked second in the NCAA North Regional rankings, will also likely earn an NCAA Tournament bid when selections are announced tomorrow at 1 p.m.
Senior goalkeeper Elizabeth Genovese (Street, Maryland/North Harford) earned Tournament Most Outstanding Player honors for Stonehill as she posted seven saves (all second half) for her fifth shutout of the season (eighth career). The Skyhawks claim their second win over LIU Post this season, handing the Pioneers their first shutout since a 5-0 setback to Bloomsburg University on October 19, 2012. Genovese was joined on the NE-10 All-Championship team from Stonehill by senior back Emily Coholan (South Dennis, Massachusetts/Dennis-Yarmouth) and sophomore back Sarah Morse (Westminster, Massachusetts/Oakmont Regional), who teamed up with Genovese to yield just one goal in the Skyhawks two NE-10 Tournament wins, with Morse chipping in with two saves and Coholan adding a key defensive save late to preserve the win today.
Senior Elizabeth Genovese was named the Tournament's Most Outstanding Player after her seven saves preserved the shutout win. (PHOTO BY Marcello Cutti, Jr./SMI)
The Championship win also marked the 100th victory for head coach Shelly Morris in her seven seasons at Stonehill. She has now posted a 100-47 (.680) record with the Skyhawks, including a 56-23 (.709) mark in NE-10 play, for a career coaching record of 167-108 (.607) in 13 years overall. It marks Stonehill's second NE-10 Championship in Morris' tenure, having won the 2009 regular season title, and will earn the program's fourth NCAA Tournament bid on her watch (sixth overall) tomorrow.
LIU Post held a 15-12 advantage in shots for the contest, including 8-7 on goal, and edged Stonehill 7-5 for penalty corners. Sophomore Ericka Parks (Nesconset, New York/Smithtown East) finished with six saves in the LIU Post cage, but the Pioneers offense could not get on the scoreboard.
Senior All-American Emily Sideris (Watertown, Massachusetts/Watertown) netted the lone goal of the contest when she took a corner pass from Morse early in the second half, made two touches and then threaded a shot through traffic and past Parks for her sixth goal of the season 10:29 into the half. It's Morse's second assist of the postseason and her 12th of the season, tying for second on the program's single-season assists list with Ashley Freeman – just two shy of the program's single-season record of 14 by Kelly Latendresse in 2005.
|Game Highlights (Courtesy of Pack Network/Northeast10.tv)
Genovese and the defense did the rest, with the senior goalie making all seven of her saves in the game the rest of the way to make the goal stand. She had four stops in quick succession after a turnover deep in the Skyhawks defensive end, including two on LIU Post junior Keliann Margiotta (Sewell, New Jersey/Washington Township), the NE-10 Player of the Year, with the Skyhawks holding the top scorer in Division II without a point for the second time this season. Coholan also blocked a rebound attempt by sophomore Steph Mocerino (Andover, Jew Jersey/Newton) at the back post during the scramble before the Skyhawks were able to relieve the pressure.
LIU Post nearly opened the scoring in the 22nd minute off a penalty corner, but postgrad Dani Crouse (Westville, South Africa) hit the post with her shot attempt and Stonehill cleared. Freshman Alexandria Sylvia (Brockton, Massachusetts/Brockton) forced Parks to make three saves, including two during a scramble in the 30th minute after Sideris had a shot drift wide off a corner.
The field hockey championship is the fourth Northeast-10 title for the Stonehill athletics department as a whole through the fall season, with championships also coming from women's tennis, women's cross country and volleyball (regular season). The Skyhawks are already two thirds of the way to their conference championship total of six in 2013-14.