#4 TCNJ Downs #2 Middlebury in Semifinals, 13-9

HOBOKEN, N.J. (May 20, 2006) In what turned out to be a wild, back-and-forth affair, 2005 national champion TCNJ (14-2) scored six straight goals in the span of 13:17 to turn a 7-6 deficit into a five-goal lead with just over 10 minutes remaining in the second half as the Lions advanced to the Division III title game for the 16th time in 20 seasons under head coach Sharon Pfluger (Hopewell Township, N.J.). Riding a 12-game winning streak, TCNJ will look to claim its 13th national championship since 1985 when the Lions take on undefeated Gettysburg for the title on Sunday.

New Jersey opened the scoring with a pair of goals from senior midfielder Lauren Dougher (Blue Bell, Pa.) in the opening six minutes of the contest. Middlebury (16-2) responded by scoring four straight goals to take a 4-2 lead with just over 12 minutes remaining in the first half. Senior midfielder Elizabeth Renehan (St. Davids, Pa.) began the Panthers' surge with her 43rd goal of the year.

TCNJ answered with four straight goals of its own to grab a 6-4 advantage with 5:02 left on the clock. Dougher was instrumental once again as she scored two more goals to fuel the rally. Renehan closed the margin to 6-5 at halftime as she converted on a free-position shot with 1:27 remaining in the first stanza.

Middlebury snatched the early momentum in the second half as the Panthers scored two goals in the first 100 seconds of the period. Renehan's third goal of the game gave Middlebury a 7-6 lead with 28:20 left to play. Freshman attack Rachel Gordon (Cherry Hill, N.J.) tied the score with a goal off an assist from sophomore midfielder Karen Doane (Bridgewater, N.J.). Senior midfielder Bridget Bigley (Cherry Hill, N.J.) staked the Lions to an 8-7 lead with a free-position shot at the 35:10 mark.

Gordon extended the margin to two goals with her second score of the game. Sophomore midfielder Karen Doane (Bridgewater, N.J.) tallied the eventual game-winning goal on a free-position shot with 19:12 remaining. Sophomore attack Kate Neese (Pottstown, Pa.) added a pair of goals at the tale-end of the six-goal spurt as TCNJ opened a 12-7 lead with 11:46 left on the clock.

Dougher led the Lions with four goals on just four shots. She added two assists and four ground balls in the victory. Bigley finished with three goals and an assist for four points. She also had two ground balls and two draw controls. Neese, Gordon and Doane collected two goals apiece for TCNJ. Senior goalkeeper Megan Marquardt (Phoenixville, Pa.) claimed her 14th victory of the season as she made eight saves in net for the Lions.

Middlebury, which had won 14 straight games before Saturday's setback, received four goals, an assist and three ground balls from Renehan. Senior midfielder Alison Perencevich (Concord, N.H.) had two goals and two ground balls. Senior attack Schuyler Winstead (Chevy Chase, Md.) added a goal and an assist to go along with four ground balls. Freshman goalkeeper Blair Bowie (Washington, D.C.) made 10 saves in the loss.

The statistics were remarkably even in the game. Middlebury attempted two more shots than TCNJ (29-27). The Lions held a 29-27 edge in ground balls. Both teams were 2-for-3 in free-position shots. The College of New Jersey had 12 draw controls to 11 by the Panthers.

[Story and stats courtesy of Stevens Sports Information]
Score by Period       1  2  Tot
-------------------------------
The College of NJ... 6 7 - 13
Middlebury College.. 5 4 - 9

The College of NJ SCORING:
GOALS: Lauren Dougher 4; Bridget Bigley 3; Karen Doane 2;
Rachel Gordon 2; Kate Neese 2.
ASSISTS: Lauren Dougher 2; Bridget Bigley 1; Karen Doane 1.

Middlebury College SCORING:
GOALS: Elizabeth Renehan 4; Alison Perencevich 2; Schuyler
Winstead 1; Claire Edelen 1; Liza Humes 1.
ASSISTS: Michele Bergofsky 2; Elizabeth Renehan 1; Schuyler
Winstead 1.

Shots by period 1 2 Tot
-------------------------------
The College of NJ... 16 11 - 27
Middlebury College.. 16 13 - 29

Ground balls by prd 1 2 Tot
-------------------------------
The College of NJ... 15 14 - 29
Middlebury College.. 15 12 - 27

Turnovers by prd 1 2 Tot
-------------------------------
The College of NJ... 7 8 - 15
Middlebury College.. 6 9 - 15

Clears by period 1 2 Total
----------------------------------------
The College of NJ... 8-9 10-11 - 18-20
Middlebury College.. 7-9 6-6 - 13-15

Free-position shots 1 2 Total
----------------------------------------
The College of NJ... 0-1 2-2 - 2-3
Middlebury College.. 1-2 1-1 - 2-3

Saves by period 1 2 Tot
-------------------------------
The College of NJ... 4 4 - 8
Middlebury College.. 7 3 - 10

Draw controls by prd 1 2 Tot
-------------------------------
The College of NJ... 7 5 - 12
Middlebury College.. 5 6 - 11

2006-05-20



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