Women’s Soccer Opens America East Play Against Hartford Sunday

Junior Sarah Kopytko
Junior Sarah Kopytko

BALTIMORE—Coming off an impressive draw with Navy in its non-conference finale, the UMBC women's soccer team (0-8-1) faces another tough challenge when it opens America East play Sunday against unbeaten Hartford (7-0-2). Kickoff at Retriever Soccer Park is scheduled for 1 p.m.

Last Time Out: Sophomore goalie Lauren Kadet (Oakville, Ontario/St. Thomas Aquinas) made seven saves and posted her second career shutout as the Retrievers battled the Midshipmen to a 0-0 draw Wednesday evening. Navy, which was ranked 10th in the Mid-Atlantic region, outshot UMBC, 19-11. Junior forward Rachel McKee (Ellicott City, Md./Mt. Hebron) took a game-high four shots.

Scouting the Hawks: Ranked eighth in the Northeast region, Hartford is 7-0-2 on the season following a 1-1 tie with Fairfield on Wednesday, which halted a seven-game winning streak. Forward Arielle Aikens scored the Hawks' lone goal in the 54th minute, and goalie Erin Quinlan made eight saves between the pipes. She has been outstanding in net all season, posting a miniscule 0.22 goals-against average and a .950 save percentage, leading the America East in both categories. Quinlan has allowed just two goals in 811 minutes while making 38 saves. Forward Amelia Pereira leads the America East with 12 points and four assists, and she is tied for the league lead with four goals, as well. Forward Caitlin Alves has also scored four goals and is third in the conference with eight points. The Hawks have outscored their opponents, 15-3, on the season, and they rank second in the America East with 1.67 goals per game.

Inside the Series: Hartford holds a 7-2-0 advantage in the all-time series, which dates to 1997. The teams have met every year since UMBC joined the America East in 2003. Last season, the Hawks defeated the Retrievers, 2-0, in West Hartford. Alex Uscilla and Lizzie Clark each scored for Hartford, while Kadet made five saves for UMBC. The Retrievers' last win came in 2009, a 1-0 decision in Baltimore, as McKee tallied the game-winner in the 32nd minute and Mo Van Vlerah(Germantown, Md./Northwest) stopped seven shots.

Saving the Day: Kadet ranks second in the America East with 5.43 saves per game this season, and she is ninth all-time at UMBC with 146 stops in her career, while Van Vlerah ranks seventh with 160.

Clean Slate: UMBC's 0-0 tie against Navy on Wednesday was its first shutout since defeating Vermont, 2-0, on Sept. 26, 2010.

America East Openers: The Retrievers are 2-6 all-time in America East openers, but 2-1 in the last three years, as they defeated Maine, 1-0, in 2008, and they took down Vermont, 2-0, in 2010.

Dawg Bites: Sophomore forward Amy Savage (Ottawa, Ontario/Sir Wilfrid Laurier) leads the Retrievers with five points this season, and she is tied with McKee for the team lead with two goals apiece… UMBC's tie with Navy on Wednesday snapped a season-long eight-game losing streak… McKee is tied for second in the America East with 23 shots this season (2.88 spg).

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