Road-Weary Retrievers Return Home, Host Delaware Wednesday

Katie Gitlin
Katie Gitlin

BALTIMOREAfter four straight games and more than two weeks on the road, the UMBC women's soccer team (1-3-1) returns home for the first time since the season opener to host Delaware (3-1-0) on Wednesday at 5 p.m. at UMBC Soccer Stadium.

Last Time Out: The Retrievers dropped a 1-0 decision at George Washington on Friday, as the Colonials scored off a corner kick in the 33rd minute, and the goal stood for the rest of the match, as UMBC managed just two shots. Freshman goalie Lauren Kadet (Oakville, Ontario/Sir Thomas Aquinas) made five saves for the Retrievers.

On the Blue Hens: Delaware is 3-1-0 on the season and coming off a 1-0 overtime victory over UMBC's America East rival Binghamton on Sept. 5. Freshman forward Shannon Kearny scored the game-winner seven minutes into the extra session and was named the Colonial Athletic Association Co-Rookie of the Week on Monday. She leads the Blue Hens with four goals and eight points on the season and has combined with forward Ali Miller to account for seven of Delaware's 10 goals. Goalie Breanna Stemler has allowed just two goals in four games this season, boasting a 0.49 goals-against average and an .818 save percentage. Delaware was picked to finish eighth in the CAA preseason poll after going 6-6-5 in 2009.

Inside the Series: UMBC is 5-9-0 all-time against Delaware in a series that dates back to 1990, but the Retrievers have won just twice in the last 11 meetings after taking the first three matchups. The teams have not met since 2004, a 3-0 victory for host Delaware. UMBC's last win occurred in 2002, a 1-0 decision in Newark. The Blue Hens hold a 4-3 advantage in Baltimore.

Saving the Day: Kadet has been stellar in her first four collegiate games, as she leads the America East with 32 saves and 8.0 saves per game – 2.4 more than any other player in the conference – and she is also tied for the league lead with an .842 save percentage, and she ranks fourth with a 1.42 goals-against average in 380 minutes of action. Kadet recorded 11 saves in her debut at Drexel on Aug. 22, the most by a Retriever rookie since Megan Smart stopped 12 shots against Navy on Sept. 3, 1997. After not playing in the season opener, she has recorded every minute since.

Spreading the Wealth: UMBC's five goals this season have been scored by five different players: seniors Sandra Vacarino (Mantua, N.J./Clearview Regional) and Christine Sadowski (Baltimore, Md./Kenwood), junior LeAnne Edgar (Mechanicsville, Md./Chopticon), sophomore Sarah Kopytko (Newtown, Pa./Council Rock North) and freshman Shannon McGuinness (East Meadow, N.Y./East Meadow).

Vacarino Vanquishes: Vacarino was named America East Player of the Week on Aug. 23 after scoring a league-high three points during the season's opening weekend. Vacarino tallied a goal and an assist to lead the Retrievers past Delaware State in their first game and became UMBC's first women's soccer player of the week since Jessica Young earned the honor on Sept. 11, 2006, and just the fourth Retriever ever to win the award in UMBC's eight seasons in the America East Conference. UMBC's active career scoring leader with seven goals and 18 points, Vacarino has tallied five goals and three assists in her last 12 games dating to Oct. 4, 2009, after registering just two scores and one assist over her first 44 collegiate contests.

Freshman Connection: Three rookies teamed up for UMBC's fourth goal against Delaware State in the season opener, as midfielder Nicole Clark (Ellicott City, Md./Howard) sent a corner kick from the left side, which midfielder Jessy Brown (Plantation, Fla./American Heritage) headed to McGuinness, who knocked it in from just in front of the goal. In all, four freshmen have recorded points for the Retrievers in 2010, as forward Amy Savage (Ottawa, Ontario/Sir Wilfrid Laurier) leads UMBC with two assists, tied for the league lead.

First Time for Everything: McGuinness and Edgar both scored their first career goals against Delaware State, while Kopytko's tally at Campbell was the first of her career. In addition, Clark, Brown and Savage all posted their first career assists against the Hornets in their first collegiate game, while junior back Kelsi Morris (Bowie, Md./Bowie/Pittsburgh) also notched an assist in her first game in a Retriever uniform.

Dawg Bites: 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… Junior goalie Mo Van Vlerah's (Germantown, Md./Northwest) 147 career saves are tied for sixth all-time at UMBC… Last season she became the first Retriever to crack the 100-save plateau since 1998, and her 109 stops where the fourth-highest single-season total in UMBC history… Sophomore forward Rachel McKee (Ellicott City, Md./Mount Hebron) leads the Retrievers with nine shots on the season… Sadowski, Vacarino and Edgar were named team captains for the 2010 season.