On Saturday the CCRI Lady Knights women’s soccer team took on rival Lady Tribunes of Monroe Community College from Rochester, NY in the District “E” semi-finals at the Lincoln soccer complex. The Lady Knights defeated the Lady Tribunes 1-0. With the victory, the Lady Knights improve to 11-6-1 on the season and advance to the District Championship game versus No. 11 ranked Monroe College who defeated Essex County College 5-1 in the other semi-final game.
Both teams battled back and forth through the entire first half of play without either team scoring. Each team had some serious threats but both goalkeepers kept the game scoreless.
With the score deadlocked at 0-0, the second half play was not much different. Both teams played hard looking for the go-ahead goal. Defensive corps for both teams were up to the task. With approximately nine minutes left in the contest, CCRI got the ball down low in the Monroe defensive third. A large scramble occurred in front of the Monroe goal and Tri-Captain sophomore forward/midfielder Paige Oram (Burrillville, RI) was in the right place at the right time as she scored giving the Lady Knights a 1-0 advantage late in the match. Freshman forward Selena Canales (Cranston, RI) was credited with the assist. With just under nine minutes remaining in the match, CCRI shifted into a defensive mentality the rest of the way to seal the hard-fought 1-0 victory. With the clean sheet Tri-Captain goalkeeper Alex Place (East Greenwich, RI) charted her sixth shutout of the season.
Head Coach Dennis Grassini commented after the game, “I am so, so happy for our team! They worked hard to prepare for this game and we finally caught a break. They just would not be denied today. Monroe is a quality program and very well coached and it always seems to come down to the both of us in post season play.” Coach Bannan and I are so proud of this team as they had to fight tooth and nail all season long to overcome lots of injuries and a very competitive game schedule. After starting the season 0-4 this group never gave up reaching 11 victories for the season up through today. They wanted this game and they came through today!”
The Lady Knights will face the Mustangs of Monroe College from New Rochelle, NY at 12noon for the District Championship at the CCRI soccer complex in Lincoln. The winner will advance to the NJCAA Division I Women's Soccer National Championship Tournament hosted by Eastern Florida State College in Melbourne, FL November 19-24th.
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.