BALTIMORE – Despite a valiant effort from freshman goalkeeper Jen Nance (Millersville, Md./Severna Park) in her first collegiate start, the UMBC women's soccer team dropped a 1-0 heartbreaker to Boston University, surrendering the contests only goal with 18 seconds remaining on the clock in Thursday night's America East matchup at Retriever Soccer Park.
The Terriers (8-5-1, 4-0-0 America East) remain undefeated in league play and extend their win streak in conference play to 28-straight games. The Retrievers fall to 1-9-3 overall and 0-3-1 in America East action.
Both teams had their share of opportunities to jump out in front during the opening half of play. Nance came up with her first big save of the night with 28:21 to go in the first half. BU sophomore forward Taylor Krebs blasted a shot from just inside the box that was slapped wide of the left post to keep the game scoreless.
UMBC went on the attack, generating chances with back-to-back corner kicks coming within a minute time span. Sophomore back Melissa Hummel (Downingtown, Pa./Downingtown East) gathered the second corner from senior forward Rachel McKee (Ellicott City, Md./Mount Hebron) and soared a shot just wide of the net.
Nance came up big again with under 10 minutes remaining in the half, getting her finger tips on a high shot from freshman midfielder Clare Pleuler, clearing it over the crossbar.
Again in the first half it looked like the Retrievers were going to jump on the board first. Freshman forward Preslie Quaranta (Baltimore, Md./Perry Hall) found herself ahead of the pack and launched a shot toward the top right corner of the net, but junior goalkeeper Andrea Green tipped the curving ball wide of the net.
Boston poured on the pressure right from the start of the second half, going on to outshoot the black and gold 18-0 and holding a 7-0 corner kick advantage in the period, but the Retrievers' defense held strong, keeping the Terriers scoreless throughout 44:42 minutes.
BU got its break when Krebs reversed the ball to the opposite side of the field for freshman midfielder Rachel Blauner. Blauner had one defender to beat and was able to get a shot off inside the left post, just out of the reach of Nance, for her first collegiate goal.
"We've been talking a lot this season about playing hard and playing with pride," head coach Leslie Wray said. "We did that tonight. We did that for 90 minutes. Yes it's heartbreaking to get scored on in the last 20 seconds, but we were taking a lot of pressure for the last 30 minutes of the game.
"We had some chances in the first half and we didn't capitalize," Wray continued. "They had some chances, but our backs and our keeper came up big. We have to take away from tonight's performance that we are changing the culture here at UMBC. The fight and the work rate that we had from the players on the field tonight is what we need to take with us the rest of the season."
UMBC's rookie keeper faced 28 shots in the contest, making nine saves on the night. Green picked up two saves on four UMBC shots.
The Retrievers take the rest of the week off and return to America East action on Thursday, Oct. 11, when it travels to Vermont to take on the Catamounts.