Pearse NEC Tournament MVP As CCSU Wins Title

Danielle Pearse. Photo: CCSU

During Central Connecticut State’s run to the Northeast Conference title, Long Island’s Danielle Pearse has been at the center of the action for the Blue Devils.

After CCSU defeated Saint Francis U. 2-1 on Sunday, the Seaford native was named the NEC Tournament’s Most Valuable Player. In the championship match at CCSU Soccer Field, She scored the game’s opening goal. Her teammate, sophomore Jenna Rae Covelloscored the game-winning goal with less than two minutes remaining.

Jenna Rae Covello

The NEC final was scoreless until the midway point of the second half. Covello dribbled down the right side and sent a low cross toward the front of the goal. There, Pearse was able to toe-poke home a shot to give CCSU the lead.

The game-winner would come in the 88th minute. Covello picked up the ball on the right side and dribbled into the middle of the box. Her left-footed shot took a deflection from 12 yards out and beat Saint Francis goalkeeper Julia Hernan to make it 2-1.

The championship is the program’s ninth all-time and the seventh under head coach Mick D’Arcy. CCSU also won the title for the first time since 2014.

Pearse earned MVP honors after scoring three of CCSU’s four goals in its two NEC tournament victories. She notched both goals in a 2-1 semifinals win over Fairleigh Dickinson. The Seaford High School graduate has also enjoyed a strong finish to her season with five goals over her past five games.