On a cold and rainy night, the Lady Cavs reigned supreme over another CSAC rival.
Neumann University had won two straight conference games entering Tuesday night’s game against Cabrini but were no match for the Lady Cavs in a 5-1 rout at Edith Robb Dixon Field.
Things did not start smoothly for the Lady Cavs. Just over three minutes into the game, the Knights tallied first. Lindsey Spatola fired a shot that deflected off a Cabrini defender and in for the first goal of the game.
Throughout the first half, the Lady Cavs continued to amount chances. Finally, at the 27-minute mark, Karlie Gruccio fired a low shot that beat Neumann goalkeeper Lindsey Kasecamp to even the score.
Just over six minutes later, Gruccio tallied her second goal of the half, again off a penalty corner, to give the Lady Cavs the lead going to the break.
“We really want to get home-field advantage,” Gruccio said. “We get a lot of support from our fans. It’s fun to give people a show.”
The Lady Cavs didn’t let up in the second half. When a penalty shot was awarded in the 48th minute, newfound penalty-shot specialist Katie Savage stepped up to take it.
The senior didn’t miss again, netting her fourth goal of the season to bring the Lady Cavs’ lead to two.
“We have a lot of people that can pull the trigger and put the ball in the net,” 17th-year head coach Jackie Neary said. “That will continue to make us dangerous in the CSAC.”
With time starting to run out on the Knights, the Lady Cavs put the nail in the coffin with the help of their senior star.
Lindsey Atzert knocked a ball out of midair and into the back of the net in the 60th minute. Six minutes later, she added her second goal of the half to cap the scoring.
“We just wanted to make sure we had that secure lead,” Atzert said. “I was just there to put it in. I couldn’t have done it without my teammates.”
The win improves the Lady Cavs to an even 5-5 on the season overall. By handing Neumann their first conference loss of the season, Cabrini remains a perfect 3-0 in CSAC play.
“Our overall goal is to get to the conference championship,” Atzert said. “Each game is important and it just helps lead us to our main goal.
“Each win is extremely important. We do want home-field advantage but overall we just want to make it to the championship.”
Much of the second half was spent in the attacking zone for Cabrini. They fired 13 shots on goal in the game, overpowering the Knights with an offensive onslaught. For the Lady Cavs, the best offense is a good defense.
“I think defensively we try to stress not allowing them into the circle and I thought today they did a good job of that,” Neary said. “Offensively we’re keeping that pressure on where we constantly going back at the goalie. That’s another important part of what will help us reach our goal this year.”
The Lady Cavs continue their season by hosting a non-conference game against The College of New Jersey on Thursday, Oct. 4. They’ll put their undefeated conference record on the line against Cedar Crest College on Tuesday, Oct. 9.
“With Neumann, it’s always a scrappy game,” Neary said. “I’m very happy with the win.”