Dacres Scores With 12 Seconds Remaining, as No. 8 Men's Soccer Rallies to Win at Vermont, 2-1

Kadeem Dacres has game-winners in both America East victories in 2013.
Kadeem Dacres has game-winners in both America East victories in 2013.

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Burlington, Vt.- UMBC senior midfielder Kadeem Dacres (Rosedale, N.Y./Mercer County CC) headed home the game-winning goal with 12 seconds to play in regulation time as the visiting Retrievers rallied for a dramatic 2-1 victory at Vermont's Virtue Field.

The eighth-ranked Retrievers won in Burlington for the first time since 2004 and improved to 11-1-1 overall and 2-0-1 in America East play. Vermont (7-3-3, 1-2-0) lost for the first time at home (5-1-1) in 2013.

UMBC drew a foul 30 yards from the goal with 25 seconds remaining in the half. Junior midfielder Mamadou Kansaye (Baltimore, Md./McDonogh) took the kick and sent a low drive deep into the box. Dacres just got in front of Vermont goalkeeper Conor Leland and skimmed it off his head and into the net.

The goal was Dacres' sixth of the season, surpassing the five he put up a year ago, his first in a UMBC uniform.

The Retrievers improved to 4-0-0 on the road in 2013 and are now unbeaten in their last eight road contests (6-0-2), tying an all-time school record.

The victory was also UMBC's third when allowing the game's first goal. They defeated Navy, 3-2, in double overtime and Hartford, 2-1, before today's rally.

"It's the sign of the character and confidence of this group that they don't get fazed when they get behind," head coach Pete Caringi, Jr. said. "It's a huge win for us against a very good team at a place that we have struggled historically."

After a scoreless first half, Vermont struck less than three minutes into the second frame.  A loose ball at midfield was played up to Charlie DeFeo, who broke in on a two-on-one with freshman striker Brian Wright. Wright didn't get the initial shot off, but recovered and chipped a shot into an open net for his sixth score of the season.

But UMBC took over the play and knotted the score in the 59th minute. After a Retriever corner kick, the ball pinballed around in the box, until Retriever junior back Jordan Becker (Pocomoke, Md./Pocomoke) put a volley into the net from seven yards out.

The goal was the second of the season for Becker and the fourth of his career.

UMBC outshot their hosts, 7-3, in the second half and 11-8 for the contest.  

Each team had a pair of good chances in the first 45 minutes. The Retrievers' opportunities occurred in the span of a minute at the midpoint of the half. Kansaye took a 25-yard free kick, which Leland dove to knock away from the near right post. Then, senior forward Pete Caringi III (Perry Hall, Md./Calvert Hall) had a shot from the top of the box, but the ball went wide of the same post.

Vermont countered moments later when Noah Johnson struck a drive from 20 yards out and UMBC goalkeeper Phil Saunders (Perry Hall, Md./Perry Hall) answered with an acrobatic diving stop at the near right post.  The Retriever netminder also punched away a DeFeo short range header later in the half after one of Vermont's five first half corners.

Saunders finished with two saves, but did not have to make any in the final 45 minutes. Leland finished with four saves for the Catamounts.

UMBC returns home on Saturday, Oct. 19 when they host first-place New Hampshire. Kick-off time is set for 7:00 p.m.