The UMBC men's soccer team (5-3-1, 0-0-1) opens a three-game in seven-day stretch when they travel to New Hampshire to take on the Wildcats (5-2-2, 0-1-0) in an America East Conference contest in Durham, N.H. The game will be played on the turf at Bremner Field and cap UNH's Homecoming Festivities with a 7:00 p.m. kick-off.
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.
UMBC is coming off 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.
UMBC has a pair of two-game winning streaks and a pair of two-game winless streaks in 2010.
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 (Baltimore, Md./Calvert Hall). 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 Wildcats: UNH was off to a 5-0-2 start, before shutout losses at Vermont (1-0) on Saturday and at 18th-ranked Michigan State (2-0) on Wednesday. Despite those setbacks, New Hampshire has only allowed six goals through nine games this season. Netminder Colin O'Donnell maintains a sterling 0.59 goals against average. Fullback Brad Hilton leads the offense with two goals and two assists.
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 son of UMBC Head Coach Pete Caringi, Jr.is in second place in America East in goals per game (0.62), trailing only Houapeu, who averages 0.88 goals per game through seven contests. He has scored goals in four of his last five outings and was credited with his second GWG at Bucknell.
The Levi is Not Dry: Houapeu now has seven goals in nine games this season and became the 11th elayer 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 5th (2.0) Goals Per game 4th (0.88)
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: For the second time this season, junior forward Andrew Bulls (Millersville, Md./McDonogh) posted two assists in a game, helping out on UMBC's first two goals vs. the Mount. He also had two assists in the opener vs. VMI. He has eight assists on the campaign (0.89 per game), which was the fourth-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 (Germantown, Md./Northwest/UNCG is 15th the nation in assists per game (0.57). 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 (Baltimore, Md./Calvert Hall) 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 two 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 (Wilmington, Del/Concord/U. Virginia) played the final 45 minutes at Mount St. Mary's and earned his first win in the UMBC cage. He made his first official career start with the Retrievers vs. Binghamton and posted a team season-best nine saves. The nine saves was the most for a Retriever goalkeeper since Steve King posted 12 at Virginia Tech on Oct. 14, 2008. Louisignau is now 2-0-1.
Team Notes: UMBC is 24th in the nation in scoring, averaging 2.13 goals per game. The Retrievers were sixth in the nation in scoring in 2009, averaging 2.15 goals per contest. Conversely, UMBC has not posted a shutout since blanking Wofford, 2-0, on Sept. 4 for their lone clean slate of the campaign.
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 teams split a pair of matches last year, as UNH won, 2-0, at UMBC during the regular season, but the Retrievers avenged that defeat with a 2-1 triumph in Durham in the America East semifinals. The Wildcats lead the overall series, 4-3-1. The tournament win by UMBC was the Retrievers' first-ever at UNH after three setbacks.
Next Up: UMBC returns to America East action on Wednesday, Oct. 13 when they head to Albany, N.Y. to take on the Great Danes. Kick-off time is set for 3:00 p.m. The Retrievers return home and play about 51 hours after the Albany match when they entertain Boston U. 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.