Solid Defensive Effort Props Felician Women To 1-0 Win

Claudia Engels and the Felician defense limited Queens to eight shots in a Sept. 20, 2017 shutout. (Steven R. Smith)
Claudia Engels and the Felician defense limited Queens to eight shots in a Sept. 20, 2017 shutout. (Steven R. Smith)

LYNDHURST, N.J. – A strong team defensive effort and a 41st-minute goal in traffic by senior forward Amanda Nowak (Kolbuszowa, Poland/Lyndhurst [N.J.]) lifted Felician University to a 1-0 non-conference women's soccer victory over visiting Queens (N.Y.) College on Wednesday night at the Lyndhurst Recreation Complex.

Felician (2-4-1) won for the second time in its last three starts, and improved to 2-1 at home this season.

The work of the Golden Falcon defense offset an offensive-third performance which produced only four shot attempts on the night, including just two on frame. In particular, the back line of senior Dina Ingenito (Lyndhurst, N.J./Lyndhurst), junior Michelle Montefinese (Eatontown, N.J./Monmouth Regional), and freshmen Claudia Engels (Lyndhurst, N.J./Lyndhurst) and Nikki Bisesi (Monroe, Conn./Masuk) made it difficult for the Knights to string together passes. Felician also successfully defended five Queens corner kicks.

The Golden Falcons threatened to jump out on top early. In the seventh minute, junior Sami Lederle (Brick, N.J./Brick Memorial) one-timed a high shot from the middle of the 18-yard box. The ball, however, bounded off the crossbar, and the Knights were able to clear the rebound.

It took until the latter stages of the first period for Felician to threaten again. This time, amid a scramble in the box, sophomore Joanne Arvanitakis (Lyndhurst, N.J./Lyndhurst) gained possession and moved the ball among several feet and legs to Nowak. The senior finished from about six yards away for her third goal of the season with 4:35 remaining until halftime. It marked Arvanitakis' first collegiate point.

Queens' best chance to score on the night occurred soon after. An Adriana Mendrinos (East Northport, N.Y./Northport) shot was knocked down by Golden Falcon freshman goalkeeper Jamie Kazenmayer (Forked River, N.J./Lacey Township). Knight senior Taylor Bonanno (Staten Island, N.Y./Notre Dame Academy) pounced on the rebound, but her offering was also stopped by Kazenmayer.

Both teams struggled to generate dangerous scoring opportunities in the second half. Kazenmayer finished the night with five saves for her second shutout of the season. Senior Erin Vernillo (Smithtown, N.Y./Smithtown East) took a team-high three of the Knights' eight shots.

The Golden Falcons return to Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference action on Saturday for a noon kickoff at Georgian Court University in Lakewood, N.J.