MONTCLAIR, N.J. – Junior midfielder Jennifer Tafro scored twice in top-seeded Montclair State’s 3-0 victory against No. 3-seeded Rowan, earning its first New Jersey Athletic Conference Championship title on Sunday.
Senior Kate Norgard scored the other goal as the Red Hawks earned the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament and will be among the field announced on Sunday evening.
It will be Montclair State’s fourth appearance in the NCAA Division III Field Hockey Championship as the Red Hawks also made trips in 2003, 2005 and 2011 each time reaching the second round.
The Red Hawks (19-1) posted their 19th victory, tying the school record set last year when MSU finished 19-3.
Senior goalkeeper Jen Goldberg made five saves for Rowan (15-6), which will wait to see if it earns an at-large bid. The Profs dropped their second meeting with MSU this season having lost 3-0 at Sprague Field on September 22.
Scoreless through the first half, Tafro scored 9:44 into the second half with the first of her two goals. Off a penalty corner, senior Frances Schaefer fired a shot that Goldberg kicked away. However, the ball bounced back to Tafro, who shot into the back of the cage for the goal as MSU led 1-0.
Three minutes later, MSU widened its lead as Norgard recorded her 15th goal of the year off a pass from Tafro, giving MSU the 2-0 advantage.
Tafro got her second goal at 53:50 finishing off a pass from Brooke Hullings.
Montclair State goalkeeper Megan Bosland made five saves and recorded her eighth shutout of the season.
Montclair State outshot Rowan 16-10 and also held a slim 8-7 advantage in penalty corners.