BALTIMORE – UMBC women's lacrosse continues its rigorous 2014 schedule on Saturday, Feb. 22 when it returns home to take on American in a 4 p.m. matchup at UMBC Stadium.
The Retrievers (0-2) were presented with a pair of tough challenges in the opening week of the 2014 campaign, taking on No. 2 Maryland in UMBC's season debut and following with a matchup against No. 20 Towson.
In its latest matchup, UMBC dropped an 11-6 decision to the Tigers, despite a stellar performance from senior Kristen Bilney (Ellicott City, Md./Mt. Hebron). The midfielder posted a first-half hat trick and finished with four scores for the Retrievers, while also adding three draw controls and two ground balls. Senior Shannon Harkey (Purcellville, Va./Loudon Valley/Florida) chipped in a goal and an assist in the matchup.
Bilney continues to be one of the Retrievers' top scoring threats in her final collegiate campaign. The senior entered the year with 60 goals in her career, including 51 over the past two seasons. Junior Alyssa Semones (Westminster, Md./Westminster/Penn State) is also picking up where she left off last season. The midfielder was tied for sixth all-time at UMBC in single-season draw controls (44) and averaged 2.75 draws per contest a year ago. Through two games, Semones has pulled in a team-best five draws.
Red-shirt sophomore Anna Barnett (Midland, Texas/Midland) and freshman Kelly Gielner (Pasadena, Md./St. Mary's) have each seen time in net for the black and gold. Barnett, who has started both matchups on the year, is coming off a career-high nine-save effort versus the Tigers, with eight coming in the opening half.
The Retrievers and Eagles battled in last year's season opener, with UMBC quickly eliminating a one-goal halftime deficit and going on to outscore AU, 9-5, in the second stanza to help co-head coaches Amy Appelt and Tony Giro earn a victory to start their tenure with the black and gold. UMBC received four goals apiece from Lindsay Cox and Alyssa Semones in the contest to guide the Retrievers to their ninth straight victory against American. UMBC holds a 14-2 advantage in the all-time series, but five games have been decided by one-goal, including a pair of overtime contests.
American (1-1) has dropped one of two to open the season, falling in the season-opener, 11-6, to High Point, but defeating Campbell, 11-9, in their home opener. Sophomore Jessica Wojciechowski tallied her first collegiate hat trick against Campbell on Sunday and leads the team with four goals and two assists on the year. Senior tri-captain Alex Lugovina registered all four of her season's goals versus the Fighting Camels. The attacker has a team-best 12 shots in the two games and has added three ground balls and three draw controls.