Baltimore, MD. -- On Thursday, second-year softball head coach Heather Gelbard announced the Retrievers' 2018 schedule and the addition of all-time UMBC Softball great Taylor Hall ('15) to the coaching staff as a volunteer assistant.
"I'm very excited to announce our schedule this year," said Gelbard "This is certainly a challenging schedule, one that will test our players physically and mentally. I think we will be up to that challenge. The goal is to better prepare ourselves for America East play with a more aggressive non-conference line-up. I think this schedule will do just that."
UMBC will open up the campaign on February 16, with the first two of five games at the Pirate Clash, hosted by East Carolina. The Retrievers will face local rival Towson followed by St.Joseph's on Friday, before facing the Tigers and the host Pirates on Saturday. UMBC will close out the first weekend of play with a Sunday, 9 am rematch with SJU.
The Retrievers will then travel to the Bayou for the 32nd annual Louisiana Classics tournament host by perennial Top-15 ranked Louisiana Lafayette. UMBC will face Southeastern Louisiana and Memphis on Friday, February 23rd, followed by Saturday matchups with North Florida and Mississippi Valley State. The Black & Gold will wrap up the tournament with Sunday morning matchup with the host Ragin' Cajuns.
March starts with a short trip to Washington, D.C. for a tournament hosted by Georgetown beginning Friday, March 2 with games against Columbia and Howard. The next day, the Retrievers will face ACC foe Virginia followed by Iona. The tournament concludes with a 3 p.m. Sunday matchup with the host Hoyas.
The home portion of the schedule begins on Friday, March 9 as UMBC hosts a 1 p.m. doubleheader against St.Bonaventure as part of a tournament co-hosted by Morgan State. The Retrievers will make the short trip to MSU the following day for a doubleheader with the Lady Bears.
UMBC will play its first midweek games of the season on Wednesday, March 14 when they again head to the Nation's Capital for a 2 pm doubleheader at George Washington.
The Retrievers will then host La Salle (twice), Sacred Heart and Drexel for a three day tournament starting Friday, March 16, before hosting a doubleheader with Hofstra the following Wednesday.
Two days later, UMBC will host an America East-MAAC challenge as two-time defending America East regular season champion Binghamton will travel to Baltimore to join the Retrievers in facing MAAC opponents Monmouth, St.Peter's and Rider. UMBC will play a single game against Monmouth on Friday followed by doubleheaders on Saturday and Sunday with St.Peter's and Rider, respectively.
The non-conference portion of the schedule concludes with a home doubleheader against kent State that Tuesday, followed by a single game against UMKC the next day.
America East play opens on March 31 as UMass Lowell comes to Baltimore for three games to wrap-up the Retrievers 16 game homestand.
UMBC then travels to Binghamton to face the Bearcats the following weekend, and then quickly return home to host a Wednesday doubleheader against Stony Brook on April 11. There will be a road trip to Maine three days later for a series with the Black Bears before coming back to Baltimore to host defending champion Albany a week later.
The Retrievers then go to Long Island for a single game on Wednesday, April 25, to conclude their series with Stony Brook before wrapping up the regular season with a three game set at Hartford that weekend.
The top six teams (out of seven) qualify for the America East tournament which will be hosted by the regular season champion beginning May 9.
Hall returns to her alma mater to join the coaching staff as a volunteer assistant, after graduating in 2015 with a major in financial economics. She climbed the Retrievers' record book and became the program's all-time leader in extra base hits (81), while finishing her career ranked in the top-10 at UMBC in 10 categories. The 2012 America East co-Rookie of the Year was only the fourth Retriever to be named to the All-Conference First Team three seasons in a row.
"I could not be more happy to have Taylor join our staff, " said Gelbard. "The fact that she accomplished so much as a student athlete at UMBC and now wants to continue that legacy as a coach here shows her commitment to growing the program"
Series History vs Opponent: Last Meeting Date (Location), Result:
Towson: 19-33, 3/1/16, (A), L 3-13 (5)
St. Joseph's: 6-9, (H), L 2-3
East Carolina: 8-19, 2/26/05, (N), L 4-7
Southeastern Louisiana: 0-1, 2/14/13, (N), L 5-13 (6)
North Florida: 0-0
Mississippi Valley State: 0-0
Louisiana Lafayette: 0-0
Howard: 22-4, 3/8/17, (A), W 11-3 (6)
Virginia: 1-9, 4/16/02, (H), L 1-6
Iona: 5-2, 2/22/14, (N), W 10-8
Georgetown: 6-6, 2/13/15, (N), L 6-7
St. Bonaventure: 0-0
Morgan State: 28-5, 4/5/17, (H), L 1-3
George Washington: 7-7, 3/31/15, (H), L 3-6
La Salle: 22-12-1, 4/15/15, (A), L 0-6
Sacred Heart: 11-5, 3/22/14, (H), W 14-10
Drexel: 19-8, 3/14/14, (H), W 3-0
Hofstra: 0-4, 4/4/92, (H), L 1-6
Monmouth: 8-7, 3/2/14, (N), W 8-3
St. Peters: 9-6, 3/23/14, (H), W 10-0 (5)
Rider: 3-9, 3/12/17, (H), W 11-7
Kent State: 0-0
UMKC: 1-1, 2/12/17, (N), W 7-4
UMass Lowell: 7-4, 4/30/17, (A), L 4-9
Binghamton: 21-29, 4/2/17, (H), L 3-10
Stony Brook: 16-32, 5/10/17, N, L 0-3
Maine: 15-27, 4/22/17, (A), L 1-7
Albany: 10-38, 5/10/17, (N), L 4-5 (10)
Hartford: 27-16, 5/6/17, (H), W 4-3
Fri. 16 Towson (N), St. Joseph's (N)
Sat. 17 Towson (N), at ECU
Sun. 18 St. Joseph's (N)
Fri. 23 Southeastern Louisiana (N), Memphis (N)
Fri. 24 North Florida (N), Mississippi Valley State (N)
Fri. 25 at Louisiana Lafayette
Mar. 2 Columbia (N), Howard (N)
Mar. 3 Virginia (N), Iona (N)
Mar. 4 at Georgetown
Mar. 9 St. Bonaventure (DH)
Mar. 10 at Morgan State (DH)
Mar. 14 at George Washington (DH)
Mar. 16 La Salle, Sacred Heart
Mar. 17 La Salle
Mar. 18 Drexel
Mar. 21 Hofstra (DH)
Mar. 23 Monmouth
Mar. 24 St. Peters (DH)
Mar. 25 Rider (DH)
Mar. 27 Kent State (DH)
Mar. 28 UMKC
Mar. 31 UMass Lowell (DH)*
Apr. 1 UMass Lowell*
Apr. 7 at Binghamton (DH)*
Apr. 8 at Binghamton*
Apr. 11 Stony Brook (DH)*
Apr. 14 at Maine (DH)*
Apr. 15 at Maine*
Apr. 21 Albany (DH)*
Apr. 22 Albany*
Apr. 25 at Stony Brook*
Apr. 28 at Hartford (DH)*
Apr. 29 at Hartford
All home games in BOLD
*- America East Conference game