Amanda Knaub recorded her fifth shutout of the season. (Photo courtesy of Monmouth SID)

NIAGARA, N.Y. – The defending Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference champion Monmouth University women picked up where they left off in 2016 with a 2-0 victory over Niagara in the conference opener for both sides at Niagara Field Saturday morning.

The Hawks extended their unbeaten streak to five matches (4-0-1). They are unbeaten in 15 consecutive MAAC matches (14-0-1) and have outscored their opponents 54-6 during the streak.

Sophomore goalkeeper Amanda Knaub earned her fifth shutout of the season and her 14th career clean sheet with three saves.

Monmouth (4-2-2, 1-0-0) took the lead in the sixth minute when senior Rachelle Ross played a ball to classmate Miranda Konstantinides, who stepped past a defender and fired a right-footed shot into the lower corner. The goal was Konstantinides’ first of the season.

The Hawks continued to generate scoring chances and capitalized on an opportunity in the 72nd minute. Madie Gibson sent a left-footed cross into the center of the penalty area where Ross headed the ball under the crossbar to double the Hawks’ cushion.

“Overall we defended well today and created some excellent scoring chances,” Monmouth head coach Krissy Turner said. “We are 1-0 in conference play, which is a great starting point.”