BALTIMORE—The UMBC women's soccer team (1-6-1) takes on cross-town rival Loyola (2-5-2) in the first match of the UMBC/Loyola soccer doubleheader Wednesday at 5 p.m. The second contest of the evening pits the Retriever men against the Greyhounds at 7 p.m. The Retrievers will look to bounce back after a tough 1-0 loss to American on Sunday.
Last Time Out: UMBC allowed a first-half goal to the Eagles on Sunday afternoon that proved to be the game-winner. Sophomore forward Rachel McKee (Ellicott City, Md./Mount Hebron) took a team-high five shots. Freshman goalie Lauren Kadet (Oakville, Ontario/Sir Thomas Aquinas) made three saves. American outshot the Retrievers, 27-13, but both teams had four shots on goal.
On the Greyhounds: Loyola is led by sophomore striker Nicole Schiro and sophomore keeper Danielle Ippolito. Schiro, the reigning Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Offensive Player of the Week, leads the Greyhounds with five goals and 11 points on the season, while Ippolito boasts an .821 save percentage in nine games. Loyola is 2-5-2 on the season, but has played a very formidable schedule thus far with several regionally ranked opponents. Loyola is the preseason favorite to win the MAAC after taking the league's regular-season and tournament titles in 2009.
Inside the Series: The all-time series between the Retrievers and Greyhounds is even at 3-3-2, but Wednesday marks the teams' first meeting since 2005, a 2-0 victory for host Loyola. UMBC has never won on the Greyhounds' home field, posting an 0-2-2 record. The Retrievers' last win occurred in 1994.
Up Next: The Retrievers open America East Conference play at Vermont on Sunday in a rematch of last season's offensive outburst, which the Catamounts took, 6-5.
Youth Movement: Four Retriever freshmen have started at least six of UMBC's eight games this season, including midfielder Jessy Brown (Plantation, Fla./American Heritage), who has started every contest. Five rookies have accounted for 13 of the Retrievers' 26 points on the year, led by forward Amy Savage (Ottawa, Ontario/Sir Wilfrid Laurier), who has scored a team-best six points on two goals and two assists. Another freshman, goalie Kadet, leads the America East with 7.0 saves per game and ranks second with a .790 save percentage. She has played 650 consecutive minutes over the last seven contests.
Beasts in the America East: UMBC ranks third in the America East with 1.12 goals scored per game and is fourth with a 1.70 team goals-against average. In addition, Savage ranks eighth in the league with 0.75 points per game, while McKee is seventh with 2.12 shots per contest.
Top Dawgs: Savage was named America East Rookie of the Week last Monday after scoring her first career goal against Delaware on Sept. 8, becoming UMBC's first women's soccer rookie of the week since Danielle Kell on Sept. 28, 2008. In addition, this marks the first time since 2007 that two Retrievers have been honored with America East weekly women's soccer awards in the same year, as senior midfielder Sandra Vacarino (Mantua, N.J./Clearview Regional) was tabbed the conference's Player of the Week on Aug. 23 after scoring a league-high three points during the first week of the season. She was UMBC's first women's soccer player of the week since Jessica Young earned the honor on Sept. 11, 2006, and she is just the fourth Retriever to win the award in UMBC's eight seasons in the America East.
Dawg Bites: UMBC nine goals this season have been scored by eight different players… Vacarino is UMBC's active career scoring leader with seven goals and 18 points… Kadet recorded 11 saves in her collegiate debut at Drexel on Aug. 22, the most by a Retriever rookie since Megan Smart stopped 12 shots against Navy on Sept. 3, 1997… UMBC's win over Delaware State on Aug. 20 was the teams' first in a season opener since defeating Howard, 3-0, in 1998… All four goals against the Hornets occurred in the first half, the most the Retrievers have scored in a period since Sept. 22, 2002, when they tallied a school-record seven times in the opening stanza, also against Delaware State… Junior goalie Mo Van Vlerah's (Germantown, Md./Northwest) 147 career saves are tied for sixth all-time at UMBC… McKee leads the Retrievers with 17 shots on the season.
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