The UMBC men's soccer team (5-3-2, 0-0-2) plays its third consecutive road game on Wednesday, Oct. 13 when they battle America East rival Albany (4-7-0, 0-2-0) at Varsity Field in Albany, N.Y. Both teams are searching for their first conference win of the young, but rapidly aging league schedule. Kick-off time is set for 3:00 p.m.
The Retrievers are in the midst of a season-high three-game unbeaten streak, but UMBC is 0-3-0 in three previous encounters at Albany.
The Retrievers opened America East Conference play on Saturday, Oct. 2, drawing 1-1 in double overtime vs. Binghamton. Freshman Pete Caringi III scored his fifth goal of the season to give the Retrievers a 1-0 lead in the 75rh minute, but the Bearcats countered seven minutes later. Senior midfielder Levi Hoaupeu had the best chance for either team in overtime, but his drive less than a minute into the first extra period was saved.
On Oct. 9, UMBC played the role of homecoming guest at New Hampshire and the two teams battled to a double overtime scoreless draw. Junior goalkeeper Dan Louisignau recorded five saves to post his first shutout in a UMBC uniform. It was UMBC's first scoreless tie since a 2008 deadlock at Maine.
Between the two America East matches, UMBC posted an impressive 2-1 win at defending Patriot League champion Bucknell on Oct. 5. Senior Chris Williams and freshman Pete Caringi III provided the Retrievers with a 2-0 lead, before the Bison scored on a penalty kick in the 82nd minute to prevent the home shutout.
The Retrievers had posted come-from-behind victories in the 2-1 home win over La Salle on Sept. 15 and the 3-2 victory at Mount St. Mary's on Sept. 18. The Retrievers trailed the Mount, 2-0, at halftime and rallied to win from a two-goal deficit for the first time since a 4-3 overtime win (they trailed 3-1) over Coastal Carolina on Oct. 11, 1997. The last time they won in 90 minutes after trailing by two goals occurred a year earlier when they erased a 2-0 deficit at Winthrop and defeated the Eagles, 4-3, on Oct. 21, 1996.
The offensive heroes for UMBC were senior Houapeu and freshman reserve forward Pete Caringi III. Houapeu scored the game-tying goal and Caringi added the game-winner vs. Mount St. Mary's, after Caringi had the game-tying tally and Houapeu the winner in the 2-1 overtime victory over La Salle.
A Glance at the Great Danes: Albany fell to Stony Brook by a 2-0 decision on Saturday, Oct. 9 in its homecoming match. The Great Danes have lost five straight matches after winning four of their first six. The team has been shut out four times during the losing streak. Goalkeeper Adrian Foncette is leading the league in saves per game (5.1) for the second straight season. Bo Jelovac) is leading the team in scoring for the second straight year. He has three goals and one assist for seven points
The Apple Does Not Fall Far: Pete Caringi III has won a pair of America East Conference Men's Soccer Rookie of the Week awards (9/7, 9/20). He made his first official start at FDU, although he was in the starting lineup for the cancelled contest at Loyola. Though his first six games coming off the bench, Caringi had scored four goals in 207 minutes of action and was a +4 (5 UMBC goals scored, 1 allowed) when he was on the field in wins over La Salle and Mount St. Mary's. The Retriever freshman is 25th in the nation and tied for second in America East in goals per game (0.6). He has scored goals in four of his last six outings and was credited with his second GWG at Bucknell.
The Levi is Not Dry: Houapeu now has seven goals in ten games this season and became the 11th player in school history to amass 25 career goals. He has 79 career points (26-18-70) and has moved into a tie for eighth place on UMBC's all-time scoring list. The nation's leading scorer in 2009 was ranked in several NCAA statistical categories entering play this week.
Points Per Game 13th (1.7)
Goals Per game 14th (0.7)
The last player to hit the 25-goal plateau was Derek McElligott, who did so in the 2003 season and finished his career with 47 tallies.
Bullish on Bulls:, Junior forward/midfielder Andrew Bulls has posted two assists in a game on two occasions this season. He helped out on UMBC's first two goals vs. the Mount and also had two assists in the opener vs. VMI. He has eight assists on the campaign (0.80 per game), which was the fifith-best figure in the nation entering play this week. The preseason Hermann Award candidate now has 21 career assists, moving into a tie for fourth place on the school's all-time list. His 69 career point total (24-21-69) moves him into tenth place on UMBC's all-time scoring list.
Player Notes: Junior midfielder Nirav Kadam is 14th the nation in assists per game (0.56). He posted his first point since the La Salle game on Sept. 15 with the primary assist on Caringi's GWG at Bucknell.
Senior Chris Williams got the UMBC rally started with his first goal of the season in the 53rd minute vs. the Mount. Williams played exclusively in the backfield for his first 59 career games, but has played in the midfield in UMBC's last three outings. He responded with UMBC's first goal of the contest at Bucknell and his five points this season (2-1-5) is a new personal best.
Junior goalkeeper Dan Louisignau recorded five saves at UNH on Oct. 9 to post his first shutout in a UMBC uniform as the Retrievers and Wildcats battled to a scoreless tie. Louisignau is 2-0-2 with a 1.12 goals against average, but has allowed only two goals in his last 355 minutes of action (0.51 gaa) since taking over the starting goalkeeping position. He made his first official career start on Oct. 2 vs. Binghamton and posted a team season-best nine saves. The nine saves was the most for a Retriever goalkeeper since Steve Kingposted 12 at Virginia Tech on Oct. 14, 2008.
Team Notes: UMBC is 31st in the nation in scoring, averaging 1.9 goals per game. The Retrievers were sixth in the nation in scoring in 2009, averaging 2.15 goals per contest. UMBC's 110-minute shutout of UNH was the squad's first clean slate since blanking Wofford, 2-0, on Sept. 4.
The Retrievers are 3-0-1 at home this season and have won 13 consecutive September home games dating back to 2007. They have a current five-game home unbeaten streak and are 11-2-1 in their last 14 home matches.
With the back-to-back wins over La Salle and Mount St. Mary's, UMBC recorded back-to-back come-from-behind wins for the first time since early in the 2000 season, when they rallied to defeat Holy Cross (4-3, 2ot) and Delaware (2-1, 2ot) on Sept. 3 and Sept. 6.
Caringi's goal vs. Binghamton broke a streak of five straight contests in which UMBC has allowed the game's first goal.
The Series: The series is squared at 3-3-1 and neither squad has posted back-to-back wins. Last season, Last season, Hoaupeu had a hat trick and senior midfielder Dustin Dzwonkowski added two in UMBC's 5-1 rout of Albany at UMBC Soccer Stadium. UMBC has scored nine goals in the past two meetings with Albany, but dropped a 5-4 decision at Varsity Field in 2008.
Next Up: UMBC returns to America East action just 53 hours after the Albany contest return home to entertain torrid Boston U. (7-3-0, 2-0-0) on Friday, Oct. 15 at 8:00 p.m. The game is part of UMBC's Homecoming Festivities and will be televised nationally by Fox Soccer Channel.