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Men's Soccer Team Prepares to Take On Stony Brook For America East Title on Sunday in New York
The UMBC menís soccer team plays (14-5-0) takes on second-seeded Stony Brook (5-9-4) in the championship game of the 2009 America East Tournament at La Valle Stadium in
Tournament Summary: Freshmen midfielders Mark Lubetkin and Milo Kapor scored first half goals and fifth-seeded UMBC defeated top-seeded and host
UMBC will compete in its first America East title game. They had previously reached the America East post-season in 2003, 2005, 2007, and 2009 and were eliminated in the semifinal round on all four occasions.
UMBC last played in a tournament title game in 2000, when they fell at Fairleigh Dickinson in the Northeast Conference title game. The Retrievers won the NEC crown a year earlier and competed in their lone NCAA Division I Menís Soccer Championship.
Entering the week, UMBC was sixth in the nation in scoring offense, averaging 2.28 goals per game.
Head Coach Pete Caringi won his 200th game at UMBC on Wednesday at UNH. He is 200-125-37 in his 19 seasons at UMBC. Caringi is the fourth head soccer coach in UMBCís 43 seasons of menís soccer. John Ellinger (1981-90) has the second-most wins with 80.
UMBCís 14 wins is the most since a 15-5-0 mark in 2000 and the fifth-most in 24 years of Division I competition. The 1999 team won 19 games (19-1-2) and earned the schoolís lone DI NCAA Tournament berth and three teams (1991, 1993, 2000) won 15 contests.
Houapeu took over the top spot in the nation in scoring with his three-point effort at
Houapeu and Bullsí 15 goals apiece is the most for a Retriever since Derek McElligott scored 15 in 2003 and is the sixth-most in a single season in school history.
The Retrieversí 9-0-0 start was the best in school history and the longest winning streak since 1999, when the NCAA-bound team won 13 straight contests. The 1977 team (15-2-0) started its NCAA Division II tournament-bound season at 7-0-0, while the 1999 Retriever Division I squad opened with six straight wins en route to the nationís best record that campaign at 19-1-2.
The Retrievers were ranked 18th overall nationally by the NSCAA and also debuted at No. 25 in Soccer America and at No. 21 in Soccer Times on Sept. 28.
UMBC tied the all-time series at 4-4-0 with a 2-0 win at UMBC Stadium on Oct. 7. Andrew Bulls scored in the first half for the Retrievers and Levi Houapeu tallied early in the second frame. However, Stony Brook has won four of the last six meetings and is perfect (3-0-0) against the Retrievers at LaValle Stadium, outscoring UMBC, 7-0. UMBC was also 0-3-0 at UNH prior to the 2-1 win in
UMBC has never competed vs. Stony Brook in America East Tournament competition.
Stony Brook is 4-0-2 since the loss at UMBC on Oct. 7. The Seawolves advanced to the title game via penalty kicks (3-2) after a 0-0 double overtime draw vs.