The UMBC men's lacrosse team (4-6, 0-3 America East) returns home on Saturday, April 11 to welcome the Vermont Catamounts (3-9, 1-2 AE) to UMBC Stadium in America East action. The opening face-off is set for 12:00 p.m. and live stats will be available via UMBC Athletics' website at www.umbcretrievers.com. Gary Stein and Kevin O'Neill have broadcast duties on www.umbcretrievers.tv.
RETRIEVER UPDATE: Junior midfielder Mark Monroe scored the game-tying goal with 0.8 seconds left in regulation, but the host Hartford Hawks scored a fortuitous goal on their first possession of overtime and defeated the Retrievers, 9-8, at Al-Marzook Field on Saturday. UMBC (4-6, 0-3 AE) has now dropped two consecutive overtime decisions at Hartford and five straight overall at Al-Marzook Field.
Four Retrievers scored three points apiece in a balanced effort. Junior midfielder Jack Gannon, junior attackman Nate Lewnes and sophomore attackman Max Maxwell all contributed two goals and one assist each, while senior attackman Conor Finch added three assists.
UMBC won the majority of the statistical battles, outshooting their hosts, 37-26, and winning the face-off (13-8) and ground ball numbers (28-25). But the Retrievers did commit 19 turnovers to Hartford's 12 in cool, blustery conditions.
Gannon and junior midfielder Pat Young lead the squad in scoring with 16 goals and seven assists apiece. Junior attackman Nate Lewnes leads the team with 20 goals and has scored in all ten games of the season.
Sophomore goalkeeper Ruston Souder has been credited with 39 saves and allowed only 24 goals (61.9%, 8.0 ga) in his last three starts.
SHORT HISTORY LESSON: In 2014, UMBC qualified for its 11th America East championship in 11 league campaigns. The Retrievers won titles in 2006, 2008, 2009 and produced runner-up finishes in 2007, 2013 and 2014. Four of UMBC's five championship games have been against Albany, with UMBC winning match-ups in 2006 and 2008 and dropping decisions in 2007, 2013 and 2014. The Retrievers defeated Stony Brook for the 2009 title.
NOTABLE: Lewnes now has 65 goals in his career, scored in 40 games… He has scored 35 goals in his last 14 contests, after scoring 30 in his first 26… His streak of scoring a goal in 15 straight games is the tenth-longest in the nation… Gannon, who has scored nine goals on his last 14 shots, is ranked 12th in the nation in shooting percentage at 47.1 percent…Young has points 38 of 40 career contests… He is currently ranked 25th in the country amongst active career leaders with 2.03 goals scored per game and is 32nd with 81 career goals.
Young became just the eighth UMBC Division I player to score 100 points by his junior season. The last to accomplish that feat was Drew Westervelt, who hit the plateau in 2006. He now has 81 goals and 24 assists (105 points, 28th in school history) in 40 career contests.
Souder's 17-save effort versus Lafayette was the most stops in a game for a Retriever netminder since Jeremy Blevins saved 20 Denver attempts in a UMBC victory in March of 2008.
UMBC started the season at 2-5 in the odd-numbered years of 2011, 2013 and 2015… In '11 and '13, the team would go on to win five of six and five of seven respectively.
UMBC started the season slowly on man-up and man-down, but have made great strides in both areas. On extra-man, the Retrievers failed on 12 of its first 13 chances, but have gone 11-for-18 since Feb. 28 and are now at 38.7 percent (12-of-31) on the season. The man-down unit allowed seven goals on its first 14 situations, but has killed off 15 of the last 18.
The 4-2 win over Monmouth was the lowest scoring game in UMBC lacrosse history…The six goals scored by both squads was the fewest since a nine goals were recorded in a 5-4 UMBC loss at Binghamton in 2004… UMBC led, 1-0, at the half, the lowest scoring half of lacrosse in program history and the two goals allowed by UMBC was the fewest since a 20-2 win over Drexel in 1992.
HEAD COACH DON ZIMMERMAN enters his 22nd season at UMBC and his 29th as a collegiate head coach. Entering the season, amongst Division I head coaches, the Retriever mentor stood eighth with 228 victories and is 16th in winning percentage at .598 entering the 2015 campaign. In the all-time coaching annuals of Division I lacrosse, Zimmerman is 26th in total victories and 47th in winning percentage, The Retriever mentor has made 13 NCAA Tournament appearances in his tenures at Johns Hopkins (`1984-90) and UMBC (1994-present). His 1984, 1985 and 1987 Hopkins teams earned national titles and he coached the Retrievers to their first NCAA Tournament appearance in 1998.
CATAMOUNT NOTES: High-scoring Vermont (3-9, 1-2 AE) has posted double digits in scoring in each of their last eight games, averaging 11.6 goals per game in that stretch. All three of Vermont's victories have come away from Burlington. Three Catamounts have scored 24 of more goals in 2015- led by James Barlow, who has netted 27. Ian Mackay has 26 goals, while Cam Milligan is ranked 20th in the nation in scoring with 52 points (24g, 28a). Mackay attempts over ten shots per game. The Catamounts are allowing 14.7 goals per game, including 21 and 20 to Stony Brook (21-12 loss) and Albany (20-10 loss) in the last two outings.
SERIES NOTES: UMBC has won all eleven previous meetings versus Vermont, including a 17-14 decision in Burlington last season. The Retrievers are 5-0 versus the Catamounts at home. Three of the last five contests have been decided by three or fewer goals, including a 9-8 home victory in 2011.
LAST YEAR'S MEETING: UMBC outscored Vermont, 10-0, in the second quarter as the Retrievers defeated the Catamounts, 17-14, at Virtue Field in the regular season finale for both squads. Lewnes scored seven goals and added an assists – the performance was UMBC's first seven-goal effort since Brendan Mundorf tallied seven times versus Stony Brook on April 29, 2006. UMBC won 28 of 34 face-offs in the game.
UP NEXT: UMBC finishes the home portion of the 2015 schedule when they welcome first-year program UMass Lowell to UMBC Stadium on Saturday, April 18 for a 1:00 p.m. contest. Nine Retriever seniors will be honored in pre-game ceremonies.