BALTIMORE- UMBC lost its grip on first-place in the America East Conference as visiting Stony Brook took advantage of early defensive miscues and defeated the Retrievers, 3-0, at Retriever Soccer Park.
The Retrievers (4-2-0, 7-6-3 overall) lost its third consecutive game and slipped behind the Seawolves (4-1-1, 8-5-3) and first-place Boston University (5-1-0, 9-7-0) in the standings. UMBC could still win the regular season title with a win at Vermont and a Stony Brook tie or less vs. Hartford and Terrier loss at Binghamton this weekend.
UMBC entered the game short-handed as three starters, central defenders Liam Paddock and Daniel Welsh, and midfielder Milo Kapor were ineligible to play due to red cards received in the match at Hartford last Saturday.
The Retrievers made matters very difficult when two defensive miscues led the Stony Brook goals in the first half. Just 1:46 into the action, UMBC senior goalkeeper Dan Louisignau (Wilmington, Del.) could not control a ball in the far right edge of the box. He attempted to pass the ball to sophomore defender Travis Dennis (Bowie, Md./Roosevelt), but the short-range pass deflected off Dennis and to Stony Brook midfielder Will Casey. Casey hit a perfect 25-yard shot from a severe right angle into the far left corner of the net before Louisignau could get back into position for his first goal of the campaign.
In the 28th minute, UMBC sophomore defender Spencer Williams (Germantown, Md./Watkins Mill) was called for a handball violation just outside the box on the left side. SBU's Kyle Schlensinger's direct kick was a low liner toward the far post, where midfielder Serigne Sylla redirected it into the net for his first goal of the season.
The Seawolves took the 2-0 lead into halftime and then survived a four-shot flurry by the Retrievers in the span of one minute in the early stages of the second half. The best chance for UMBC occurred when sophomore forward Pete Caringi III (Perry Hall, Md./Calvert Hall) took a lead pass and broke toward the goal with a Seawolf defender draped all over him. Caringi's left-footed blast from 10 yards beat netminder Stefan Manz, but hit the underside of the crossbar and senior midfielder Kinglsey Onwuka's (Baltimore, Md./Kenwood) follow-up effort was blocked out over the end line.
The visitors scored the third goal of the night in the 74th minute as Raphael Abreu chipped a 12-yard shot over Louisignau and into the cage after receiving a back-heel lead pass from Leonardo Fernandes.
Manz made a brilliant reaction save on a Caringi header in the 81st minute to preserve the shutout. He made three saves, while Louisignau had five in the UMBC nets. Stony Brook outshot UMBC, 14-13.
UMBC honored Louisignau, Onwuka and five others seniors- midfielder Andrew Bulls(Millersville, Md./McDonogh), goalkeeper Miguel Calderón (Bowie, Md.), midfielder Sean Rothe (Dundallk, Md./Archbishop Curley) defender Vince Savarese (Baltimore, Md./Archbishop Curley) , and midfielder Andy Streilein (Rockville, Md.)- before the contest.