February 25, 2011

Women’s Lacrosse Looks to Bounce Back Saturday at American

BALTIMORE—Following a tough loss at 17th-ranked Florida on Wednesday, the UMBC women's lacrosse team (1-1) looks to bounce back when it faces off with American (1-1) Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Eagles' William I. Jacobs Recreational Complex.

Last Time Out: The Retrievers fell to No. 17 Florida, 16-6, on Wednesday. The Gators, who led, 6-1, at halftime, used a pair of 6-0 runs to take control of the game. Junior midfielder Alicia Krause (Ellicott City, Md./Mount Hebron/Duquesne) led the Retrievers with two goals. Sophomore Kendall Mason (Lloyd Harbor, N.Y./Cold Spring Harbor) and senior Natalie Rau (Forrest Hill, Md./Fallston) each played 30 minutes in goal and combined for five saves.

On the Eagles: American (1-1) picked up its first win of the season on Wednesday with  17-8 victory over George Washington. Attack Kimberly Collins led all scorers with five goals, while three other players each notched hat tricks. Collins and midfielder Bernadette Maher lead the Eagles with five goals apiece, while midfielder Emily Stankiewicz has recorded a team-best five caused turnovers and six draw controls. Goalie Kaska Komosinski has posted a 12.06 goals-against average and a .273 save percentage. American, which posted a 6-10 record in 2010, was picked to finish fourth in the Patriot League preseason poll.

Inside the Series: UMBC leads the all-time series against American, 11-2 and has won six straight dating to 2004. While three of those wins came down to one goal, the Retrievers dominated last season's matchup in Baltimore, defeating the Eagles, 19-2. UMBC put together a 12-0 run that spanned both halves and lasted more than 35 minutes. Midfielder Amanda Pappas (Pasadena, Md./Chesapeake) scored four goals, while attack Emily Coady (Westminster, Md./Westminster) tallied five points on three goals and two assists, as nine different Retrievers found the back of the net.

Honor Roll: Senior attack Erika Braerman (Fallston, Md./Fallston) earned the first America East Player of the Week ward of the 2011 season on Monday, while sophomore defender Jamie Fahey (Baldwin, Md./Loch Raven) was named Defensive Player of the Week for their efforts in UMBC's 19-7 victory over George Mason on Feb. 11. The awards covered all games through Feb. 20. Braerman scored a career-high eight points on five goals and three assists, while Fahey led the Retrievers defensively with four ground balls, a career-high four caused turnovers and two draw controls.

Streaking: Senior midfielder Ashley Stodter (Silver Spring, Md./Good Counsel) has scored a goal in seven straight games dating to April 10, 2010. However, Pappas saw her 12-game point streak, which dated to Feb. 27, 2010, and six-game goal streak (April 10) come to an end on Wednesday, when she was held scoreless. Coady was also held without a goal for the first time since April 7, 2010, snapping her seven-game streak.

Back in the Mix: UMBC scored 223 goals in 2010 and returns 80 percent of its offense, including all four 30-goal scorers – Coady (35), Pappas (34), Stodter (33) and Braerman (32). Braerman, Fahey and Pappas were all named to the America East all-conference second team last season.

Retrievers Picked Third: UMBC was predicted to finish third in the America East preseason poll. The Retrievers garnered 27 points, including one first-place vote, and finished just two points behind second-place Albany, the 2010 regular-season champion. Six-time defending champion Boston University was the preseason favorite. The top four teams in the conference will advance to the America East Championship May 5-7. Under first- year head coach Kelly Berger, the Retrievers had a breakout season in 2010, posting an 11-7 record and reaching the America East title game for the first time ever, despite missing the tournament in each of the previous three seasons.

Taking on the Best: UMBC will face four teams that were ranked in the top 20 in the IWLCA preseason poll, including No. 12 Loyola (March 23), No. 15 Towson (March 2), No. 17 Florida (Feb. 23) and No. 18 Boston University. In addition, Albany (April 30) and Johns Hopkins (April 13) were also receiving votes in the poll. So far, the Retrievers are 0-1 against ranked teams this season following Wednesday's 16-6 loss to the Gators. UMBC's 2010 America East semifinal win over the Great Danes, who were ranked 19th at the time, was its first over a top-20 team since knocking off the No. 11 Terriers on April 1, 2006, snapping a skid of 16 straight losses. The Retrievers faced five ranked opponents last season.