Warwick, R.I. - November 10, 2014: The CCRI Lady Knights women's soccer team traveled to Newark, NJ this past weekend to compete in the District E Women's Soccer Championship. The Lady Knights faced-off against No.2 ranked (NJCAA DI poll) Mustangs of Monroe College from New Rochelle, NY. The Lady Knights lost to the Mustangs 5-1. With the loss the Lady Knights end their season with a 10-5-1 record. Monroe advanced to the District final where they beat Monroe Community College from Rochester, NY 1-0. The Mustangs advance to the NJCAA DI Women's Soccer National Championship in Melbourne, FL.
CCRI played the Mustangs tough for the first 15 minutes of the game until All-American Ana Carol Rodriguez scored from close range to give Monroe the 1-0 lead. 12 minutes later Melanie Formosa scored on a corner kick to give Monroe the 2-0 advantage. over the next 10 minutes The Mustangs stampeded the CCRI defense with three more goals by Rodriguez, Samantha Mendez, and Gabriella Braga to give Monroe a commanding 5-0 lead. With about 10 minutes left int he half Te Mustangs were awarded a penalty kick and sent Rodriguez to the line to attempt to record a hat trick (three goals in a game). However, Lady Knights' Goalkeeper Jennifer Kilburn (Norton, MA) came up huge, thwarting the shot while also not allowing a rebound for follow-up shot attempt.
As the second half began the Lady Knights did not give-up or lose faith in themselves even though Monroe continued to play toughly. CCRI actually gained momentum and began to create their own scoring opportunities. CCRI Tri-Captain Stepheny Perez (Providence, RI) had three free kick opportunities for CCRI. Perez just missed on her first attempt but scored the Lady Knights only goal on her second opportunity. On her third attempt Perez almost scored again but the Mustangs Keeper deflected the shot off the crossbar and over the net for a CCRI corner kick. On that corner Perez served in a nice set piece to sophomore Ashely LeClair (Westerly RI) who headed the ball towards the low corner of the Monroe goal but the Monroe Keeper once again made a great diving save. That was the last scoring chance for the Lady Knights as the game would end with a 5-1 score.
Head Coach Dennis Grassini commented after the game "Monroe College is an excellent team that is loaded with very talented and dynamic players. They pass and move well without the ball. They are not ranked No. 2 for nothing! Due to some key injuries we had no choice but to juggle our line-up. However, Coach (Kathy) Bannan and I are so proud of our team for playing hard and giving everything they had. As coaches you cannot ask for more than that. Our kids never gave-up and we applaud them for that."
The Community College of Rhode Island, New England's largest comprehensive community college, enrolls nearly 18,000 students in credit courses and thousands more in non-credit and job training classes. Its athletic program boasts 12 varsity programs and an academic support program for all student-athletes.