HOLMDEL, N.J. – New Jersey Copa FC is still unbeaten at home in United Women’s Soccer.
The defending Eastern Conference champions rode unassisted strikes from Camille Bowen in the 18th minute and Katarina Nilsson in the 73rd and its defense posted a clean sheet for the second time at home as they recoreded a 2-0 win over the Lancaster Inferno at Saint John Vianney High School Saturday.
Playing for the first time since May 20 and coming off just the third loss in its history, NJCFC improved its record and to 6-0-1 all-time at home in its two-year existence.
Jackie Bruno, a former UMass standout, was tabbed the woman of the match after an outstanding 88-minute performance, helping to control the midfield.
“I’m was very happy and encouraged with our intensity and focus throughout today’s match,” head coach Roberto Aguas said. We made it a point to focus on setting a tone in the match by defending and attacking with numbers. This allowed us to create a number of chances which resulted in two goals while also continuing our streak of no goals allowed at home. Ultimately we looked great today on both sides of the field. Next weekend we hit the road with a critical six points on the line.”
NJCFC got the only goal it needed late in the 18th minute as Bowen, a Marist College standout and first-team All-Metro Athletic Atlantic Conference honoree, collected a deflection in the middle of the field and unleashed a blast to the far post from more than 30 yards.
While Lancaster enjoyed a 10-8 shot advantage, few were dangerous and only two chances were on goal. Andrea Leitner (Scotch Plains-Fanwood, N.J.) played more than 88 minutes in net to set the tone for the shutout in front of a dominant defensive unit paced by Binghamton University’s Rebecca Raber and Monique Goncalves (Warren, N.J.) of Monmouth University.
The Inferno had its best chance to even it late in the 49th minute but Emilie Kupsov’s shot from 27 yards caromed off the left post before being cleared.
Nilsson (Hopewell Valley, N.J.), who entered the game in the 61st minute, made her presence felt in a 24-minute reserve role. After beating a defender on the right side of the six-yard box in the 73rd minute, The Times of Trenton player of the year and Hopewell Valley High School star’s first shot was blocked but she tucked the rebound into the far left side netting for her third goal this season.
Lancaster keeper Brooke Myers made three saves.
NJCFC heads to Western New York for a two-game road trip when it faces the Rochester Lady Lancers and the Western New York Flash June 10 and 11, respectively.