Courtesy of Drew Athletic Communications
MADISON, N.J. – For the first time since 2008, the Drew University men's soccer team is headed to the NCAA Tournament. The 10th-ranked and top-seeded Rangers (19-0-1) secured the second Landmark Conference title in program history with a 3-1 win over Elizabethtown (10-7-2), the No. 2 seed, in the championship game of the Landmark Conference Tournament at Ranger Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Aidan Cserhat scored Drew's first two goals to earn tournament MVP honors.
This marked the second time in program history that the Rangers hosted the Landmark championship game, and the result was the same as the first. Drew earned its first Landmark championship since 2007 in front of a near-capacity crowd at Ranger Stadium.
"It feels great, but by no means do we think this is the end of it," Niko Cserhat said. "This is just one of our first goals. We hope to have a deep run in the NCAA Tournament, too."
The combination of Andy Imoh and Aidan Cserhat got the Rangers on the board in the 21st minute, as Imoh cut through the Elizabethtown defense and tapped it to Cserhat, who put in his 19th goal of the season. They did it again 77 seconds later when Imoh found an open Cserhat streaking down the middle of the field, and he blew one past the goalkeeper for a 2-0 advantage.
"They were both beautifully set up by Andy," Cserhat said about the two goals. "I had the easier job of putting it in the net. I thank my teammates and Andy for that."
Nate Race made it 3-0 when he scored off a feed from Matt Asante just 45 seconds into the second half. Elizabethtown avoided a shutout after Drew was whistled for a foul in the box and Scott Hess converted the penalty kick to trim the Rangers' lead to 3-1. The Blue Jays wouldn't get another shot off, though, and Drew clinched the conference title with its 16th consecutive win.
Jason Adamo (19-0-1) made three saves for the Rangers, while Elizabethtown's Brian Gatley (10-6-1) was credited with seven saves.
Drew will find out its first round opponent and destination during the NCAA Selection Show, which can be watched live on NCAA.com at 1:30 p.m. on Monday. The Rangers' first-round game will be on either Friday, Nov. 10 or Saturday, Nov. 11.