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Rowan Sports Highlights/Results: Volleyball NJAC Champs; Football & Men and Women's Swimming

NJAC Champions! Volleyball Wins 3-2 Thriller Over Montclair State

GLASSBORO, NJ -- In a match for the ages, Rowan claimed its fourth conference title and first since 2004 as the Profs took down Montclair State, 3-2 (25-23, 25-27, 19-25, 25-20, and 19-17), in the NJAC Championship here at Esbjornson Gymnasium on Saturday.


With the victory, Rowan capture's the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament. Selections will be announced on Monday afternoon.

The resilient Profs battled through deficits throughout the match, most importantly in the fifth and deciding set, as Rowan fought off match point five times en route to the title. In all, there were 30 ties and 18 lead changes throughout the day.

The team's two seniors, Natalie Ogden (22) and Cassidy Abdalla (14) totaled 36 of the squad's 59 kills. For Abdalla, the 14 kills were a career high while Ogden added 14 digs for another double-double. Isabel Kirchner and Courtney Rhoden were a force in the middle, combining for nine blocks. Setter Brooke Adams doled out 42 assists, and added nine digs and a season-high five kills.

Montclair State had three players in double-digit kills, led by Skylar Kowalski with 15. Kiara Polanco and Leah Higgins each added 13.

Things got off to a rocky start in the first set as the Red Hawks jumped out to an 11-2 lead. The Profs hung around, putting together small bunches of points to whittle the deficit down. The squad got it to a 23-19 score before netting six points in a row to take their first lead and more importantly a 1-0 edge.

The Profs used the momentum of the first set into the second, where the home team led 9-4 after a five-point run. The Red Hawks eventually took a 16-15 lead and get it to 24-21. RU wrestled the lead back with four points of their own, looking to go up, 2-0, but Montclair put up three kills in a row to even things out.

After MSU won the third set, the Profs had to take the fourth to keep things alive. After breaking an 18-18 tie, Rowan nailed down a 20-15 score to force a winner-take-all fifth set.

Again the momentum of the previous set carried over to the fifth, where the Profs got out to a 4-1 advantage. The pendulum swung back in favor of the visitors as they ran off a 5-1 run to lead 6-5 and force a Rowan timeout. Later in the set, a kill form Arias put the Red Hawks on the cusp with a 14-12 lead, but the Profs stayed alive with two-straight points. After nervously swapping points, Odgen's kill gave RU the lead at 18-17. On the next serve, the return attack from Montclair was out of bounds capping a tremendous comeback


CNU Comes From Behind to Beat Rowan 32-28


GLASSBORO, NJ – Christopher Newport’s Michael Bailey caught a 22-yard pass with :49 seconds to play to lift the visitors to a 35-32 win over Rowan in NJAC football action today, in the Profs’ final home game of the season. The touchdown ruined a comeback by Rowan, as the Profs had scored twice in the final eight minutes to take a 32-28 lead. 


Trailing 28-17 in the fourth quarter, Jajuan Hays capped a 5-play, 72-yard drive with a touchdown run from two yards out. The Profs ran their own version of the “Philly Special” for the two-point conversion, as Husni took the snap, handed it to James Fara, who gave it to John Maldonado, and he completed a pass to Husni in the endzone, to pull Rowan within 28-25.


CNU (5-5; 3-3 NJAC) then missed a 25-yard field-goal attempt and the Profs got the ball back with under four minutes to play. Husni orchestrated an 80-yard drive with passes to Maldonado, Terry Carlstrom and Eddie Jamison. Fara then took the ball up the middle for 17 yards to score with 1:28 remaining, giving the Profs a 32-28 lead, which they held until Bailey’s winning reception. 


The teams traded leads in the first half and Rowan had a 10-7 lead at halftime after a field goal by Jake Hurler and 10-yard touchdown reception by Maldonado. 


CNU regained the lead in the third quarter, 14-10, before Rowan answered back with a 4-yard touchdown by Jajuan Hays. 

Christopher Newport scored the next two touchdowns to go up 28-17 with 9:58 to play in the game. 

Fara ran for 133 yards on 10 carries, with one touchdown, while Hays scored two touchdowns running for 44 yards. Maldonado picked up 137 yards on 10 catches, with Carlstrom catch seven passes for 47 yards. 


Rowan (1-7; 1-4 NJAC) closes out the season next week when it travels to TCNJ for a Friday night game at 7:30 p.m. ​


Women's Swimming & Diving Ties With Montclair State, 150-150

UPPER MONTCLAIR, NJ -- Rowan and Montclair State swam to a 150-150 tie Saturday afternoon in a New Jersey Athletic Conference meet.


The Profs claimed seven first-place finishes with 11 second and nine third results. The Red Hawks had nine golds, five silvers, and seven bronzes as both teams tallied 150 points.

Jordan McChesney won individual two events (50 fee, 100 free) while taking second in the 200 free. She teamed up with Veronica Alferez, Elizabeth Jones, and Kylie Salerno in the 400 freestyle relay to finish first (3:43.24).

Alferez also nabbed two golds individually as well as she won the 500 (5:28.90) and the 1000 free (11:05.25). Bella Stefanowicz claimed three medals, one of each. Her gold came in the 200 breaststroke (2:36.72). TeammateGabby Buck touched first in the 100 butterfly (1:00.51).

The Profs home meet against Ramapo originally scheduled for November 13th has been postponed with no makeup date at this time. However, Rowan will still host the Profs Diving Invitational featuring Seton Hall and West Chester.


Men's Swimming & Diving Bests Montclair State, 177-120

UPPER MONTCLAIR, NJ -- Spurred on by a trio of multi-winners, the Rowan swimming & diving team won 177-120 at Montclair State on Saturday in a New Jersey Athletic Conference meet.


Joe Rucci, Kevin Gillooly, and Garrett Kerr all placed first in two individual events each. Rucci was victorious in the 200 butterfly (1:52.89) and the 200 IM (1:57.71) while Gillooly took home the 100 (50.97) and the 200 backstroke (1:54.77). Kerr won two diving events in his first action of the season.

Alex Volin and Justin Goglia also claimed a pair of gold medals. Volin was the winner in the 200 free (1:46.60) and Goglia in the 500 IM (4:57.87).

The relay foursome of Gillooly, Dubij, Rucci, and Gavin Luong won the 200 medley in a time of 1:37.30. The 400 relay team of Volin, Dubij, Paul Riter, and Gillooly was victorious timing in at 3:14.44.

The Red Hawks' Lucas Gomes won three events for the home team (50 free, 100 free, 100 butterfly).

The Profs home meet against Ramapo originally scheduled for November 13th has been postponed with no makeup date at this time. However, Rowan will still host the Profs Diving Invitational featuring Seton Hall and West Chester.