Women’s Soccer Opens Three-Game Home Stand with America East Rivals Maine, Stony Brook This Week

Brooke Piper
Brooke Piper

BALTIMOREThe UMBC women's soccer team (2-9-1, 1-2-0 AE) hosts Maine (5-4-0, 1-1-0 AE) and Stony Brook (2-8-2, 1-1-1 AE) this week in America East Conference action. The Retrievers host the Black Bears on Thursday at 4 p.m., then continue their three-game home stand on Sunday when they take on the Seawolves at 1 p.m. Both games will be played at UMBC Soccer Stadium.

Last Time Out: The retrievers fell to New Hampshire, 2-0, on Sunday afternoon, despite outshooting the Wildcats, 15-13, including 10-5 in the second half. Sophomore forward Rachel McKee (Ellicott City, Md./Mount Hebron) and freshman forward Amy Savage (Ottawa, Ontario/Sir Wilfrid Laurier) each took a game-high four shots, while freshman goalie Lauren Kadet (Oakville, Ontario/St. Thomas Aquinas) made seven saves.

On the Black Bears: Maine has won four of its last five matches, including a 2-1 victory over America East rival Vermont on Thursday. The Black Bears are led by midfielder Kelsey Wilson's six goals and 14 points; she leads the America East with 1.56 points per game and 0.67 goals per contest. Defender Lisa Bijman was named America East Rookie of the Week on Monday after scoring the game-winner against the Catamounts. Goalie Meagan Price-Leibenzeder has started six games in net and has posted a 1.49 goals-against average and a .690 save percentage. Maine, which was picked to finish fifth in the America East preseason poll, ranks second in the league with 1.78 goals per game.

Inside the Series: The Black Bears lead the all-time series with the Retrievers, 7-1, dating to 2003, when UMBC joined the America East Conference. The Retrievers' sole win was a 1-0 home victory in 2008. Last year, Maine outshot UMBC, 19-8, on its way to a 7-0 victory.

On the Seawolves: Stony Brook got off to a rough start, dropping seven of its first eight contests, but is 2-1-1 over its last four games and will host Vermont on Thursday before heading to Baltimore. The Seawolves' offense is well-balanced, as eight different players have tallied at least one goal, led by midfielder Sa'sha Kershaw's three goals and eight points on the season. Goalie Chelsea Morales has started all 12 games for the Seawolves and currently owns a 2.07 GAA and a .709 save percentage. Stony Brook, which was picked to finish second in the America East preseason poll, has been outscored, 25-11, on the season.

Inside the Series: Stony Brook has won the last four matches against UMBC and leads the all-time series, 7-3, dating to 1990. The Retrievers' last win occurred in 2005. UMBC looks to avenge last season's 5-0 shutout at the hands of the Seawolves, when they were outshot, 19-8.

Spreading the Wealth: Nine different players have scored for UMBC this season, matching the total from 2009. The last time more than nine players found the back of the net in one season was 2004, when 12 different Retrievers tallied a goal.

Youth Movement: Four Retriever freshmen have started at least 10 of UMBC's 12 games this season, including midfielder Jessy Brown (Plantation, Fla./American Heritage) who has started every contest. Five rookies have accounted for 15 of the Retrievers' 34 points on the year, led by Savage, who has scored a team-best six points on two goals and two assists. Another freshman, goalie Kadet, has played 1,011 consecutive minutes over the last 11 contests.

Vacarino Vanquishes: Senior midfielder Sandra Vacarino (Mantua, N.J./Clearview Regional) is UMBC's active career scoring leader with eight goals and 20 points. Five of her eight goals have come against America East opponents, all within the last two seasons. In addition, three of her four career assists have been in league contests.

Saving the Day: Kadet leads the America East with 7.0 saves per game and ranks third with an .897 save percentage on the season. She was named America East Rookie of the Week on Sept. 27 after posting her first career shutout in UMBC's 2-0 win at Vermont. It was the first shutout by a Retriever freshman since Catie Bukowski blanked Albany on Oct. 9, 2005. Earlier in the season, Kadet recorded 11 saves in her collegiate debut at Drexel on Aug. 22, the most by a Retriever rookie since Megan Smart stopped 12 shots against Navy on Sept. 3, 1997.

Top Dawgs: Kadet is the second Retriever to be named America East Rookie of the Week this season, as savage garnered the honor on Sept. 13 after scoring her first career goal against Delaware. She was UMBC's first women's soccer rookie of the week since Danielle Kell on Sept. 28, 2008. Kadet and Savage are the first pair of Retriever teammates to win the award since Ashley Singer and Morgan Warrington in 2007. In addition, Vacarino was tabbed the conference's Player of the Week on Aug. 30 after scoring a league-high three points during the first week of the season. She was UMBC's first women's soccer player of the week since Jessica Young earned the honor on Sept. 11, 2006, and she is just the fourth Retriever to win the award in UMBC's eight seasons in the America East. This also marks the first time that three Retrievers have been honored with America East weekly women's soccer awards since 2003, UMBC's first year in the conference, when Lori Quintavalle earned a player of the week nod and Amanda DiCarlo and Christie Sikorski were both named rookies of the week.

Beasts in the America East: UMBC is tied for fourth in the America East with 1.00 goals scored per game. In addition, McKee ranks ninth in the league with 2.17 shots per game on the season.

Goose Eggs: UMBC's 2-0 win over Vermont on Sept. 26 was its first shutout since defeating Hartford, 1-0, on Oct. 11, 2009.

Road Redemption: UMBC's win over Vermont on Sept. 26 was the first road win for the Retrievers since a 4-1 victory at Delaware State on Oct. 2, 2009, and their first conference road win since defeating Albany, 4-3, on Oct. 26, 2008.

America East Openers: The Retrievers' win over Vermont on Sept. 26, was just their second victory in an America East opener in their eight years in the league, with their other win coming in 2008 when they defeated Maine, 1-0.

Stinging the Hornets: UMBC's win over Delaware State on Aug. 20 was the team's first in a season opener since defeating Howard, 3-0, in 1998. All four goals against the Hornets occurred in the first half, the most the Retrievers have scored in a period since Sept. 22, 2002, when they tallied a school-record seven times in the opening stanza, also against Delaware State.

Dawg Bites: Despite nine losses, the Retrievers have been in nearly every game, as they have lost just twice by more than a goal… UMBC's win over Vermont on Sept. 26 snapped an eight-game winless streak, which included seven losses and a tie… Junior goalie Mo Van Vlerah's (Germantown, Md./Northwest) 147 career saves are tied for sixth all-time at UMBC… McKee leads the Retrievers with 26 shots on the season.

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