UMBC Looks For Another Upset Saturday Against Hopkins

March 10, 2012 | WNST Staff

The UMBC (2-2) men’s lacrosse team hurdled the first obstacle in a challenging week as the Retrievers knocked off No. 4 Maryland, 8-7, at UMBC Stadium on Tuesday evening, March 6. Just four days later, UMBC has the assignment of taking on No. 2 Johns Hopkins (4-0) at M&T Bank Stadium at the Konica Minolta Face-Off Classic. The opening face-off is scheduled to take place at 4:00 p.m. Game coverage includes ESPN3 with John Brickley and Paul Carcaterra on the call.

SCOUTING THE RETRIEVERS

The UMBC men’s lacrosse team scored five unanswered fourth-quarter goals and rallied to defeat No. 4 Maryland, 8-7, at UMBC Stadium on March 6. It was the Retrievers’ first victory over a top-five program since a 9-7 win over No. 5 Maryland in March of 2009. UMBC was ranked No. 10 at that time.

Junior attackman Scott Jones led UMBC with two goals and one assist, while sophomore midfielder Conor Finch posted his first three points of the season with a goal and two helpers, all in the fourth quarter. Jones scored both the go-ahead (7th) goal and eventual (8th) game-winning goal. Sophomore midfielder Zach Linkous added two goals for UMBC.

Sophomore face-off specialist Phil Poe controlled 15 of 19 draws in the contest against a team that entered the game at 61.4 percent.

Jones and Linkous lead UMBC with nine goals apiece through four games.

All four games for the Retrievers this season have been decided by four or fewer goals. Three of the four have been tied at some point in the fourth quarter.

SCOUTING THE BLUE JAYS

Johns Hopkins is coming off an 11-0 shutout win over Manhattan on Tuesday. The Jaspers managed only 14 shots against the Blue Jays. Junior midfielder John Greeley scored three goals for the Jays, as eight different JHU players hit the nets.

Junior attackman Zach Palmer leads the Jays in scoring with 7 goals and 10 assists. Another native of Canada, sophomore attackman Brandon Benn leads the way in goal-scoring with 8. Hopkins is allowing only 5.00 goals per game and junior netminder Pierce Bassett has a 60.9 save percentage in five starts.

The Blue Jays have outscored their foes, 50-25, this year, including 39-16 through the first three quarters.

Johns Hopkins is 106-29 (.784) in its last 135 regular season games dating back to the end of the 2001 season and 123-37 (.767) overall since the start of the 2002 season.

Johns Hopkins made its 40th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament last season. By comparison, the next six longest active streaks of qualifying for the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Tournament add up to exactly 40 consecutive appearances (Maryland-9, Cornell-8, Virginia-7, Notre Dame-6, Duke-5, North Carolina-5).

THE SERIES

Prior to the 2012 season, UMBC men’s lacrosse had competed against 75 different institutions in men’s lacrosse and had a minimum of one victory against 74 of those schools. The exception is Johns Hopkins. The Blue Jays are 9-0 vs. the Retrievers. (UMBC lost its first-ever meeting with Robert Morris to start the 2012 campaign.)

The two schools resumed their series in 2005 and have met in each of the past seven seasons. Three of those seven meetings have been decided by three goals or less, with the closest occurring in 2008, when Hopkins prevailed, 10-8.

Last season’s 16-5 triumph by Johns Hopkins at the Konica Minolta Face-Off Classic tied the greatest goal differential in the series (15-4 in the first meeting in 1983 in Don Zimmerman’s first game as a Blue Jay mentor).

Dave Brown scored a pair of goals for UMBC, while sophomore attackman Joe Lustgarten contributed a goal and an assist. Adam Cohen made one of his two starts in 2011 in the game and recorded 11 saves.

Rob Grimm has four goals and one assist in three previous games vs. Johns Hopkins.

UP NEXT: UMBC has a rare two-week break between games prior to resuming a series with local rival Loyola. The Retrievers and Greyhounds will square off at UMBC Stadium for the first time since 2004 on Sat., March 24 at 7:00 p.m.

*****

TOP DAWG: In 2009, Head Coach Don Zimmerman earned his third America East Coach of the Year honors in the four years.  Zimmerman entered the 2012 season 9th in victories (208) and 14th in winning percentage (61.5%) amongst active Division I coaches. The win over Binghamton on April 10, 2010 was the 200th in the career of UMBC head coach Don Zimmerman. He is now 210-131 in his 26th year as a collegiate mentor. Zimmerman is the 10th active coach to record 200 victories. He coached his 250th game at UMBC vs. Hartford on May 4, 2012.

Zimmerman’s Records
Career Record:  210-132 (.614) (26th season)
at UMBC:                137-117 (.539) (19th season)

TEAM CAPTAINS: The UMBC men’s lacrosse team has selected senior attackman Rob Grimm (Black River, N.Y./Carthage), junior attackman Scott Jones (Port Coquitlam, B.C./Terry Fox) and junior long-stick midfielder Ethan Murphy (West Seneca, N.Y./West Seneca East) as its captains for the 2011-12 season.

“We are pleased with the selection of Rob, Scott and Ethan as this year’s captains,” head coach Don Zimmerman said. “They are outstanding individuals in their own right, and this trio will now have the opportunity to work together as leaders, representing the 2012 Retrievers on and off the playing field.”

CONGRATS: Four returning players received their first conference accolades. Junior attackman Scott Jones and junior defender Sam McKelvey earned Second Team All-Conference honors. Sophomore Zach LInkous was named to the league’s All-Rookie Team and sophomore Neill Lewnes earned a spot on the conference’s All-Academic squad.

Sixty Retrievers have been honored by the America East Conference on all-league teams since 2004.

BEASTS OF AMERICA EAST: UMBC is now 33-9 in eight years of America East competition and 18-3 at UMBC Stadium.

In 2011, The Retrievers (6-7, 3-2 AEC) had a winning league record and earned a spot in the four-team America East Conference Championships for the eighth consecutive year.

WINNING THE TIGHT ONES: UMBC is now 24-14 in games decided by three goals or less since the beginning of the 2007 season. UMBC had won eight straight overtime decisions from 2007-09 until dropping a Feb. 20, 2010 triple overtime decision to Delaware. UMBC’s previous overtime loss was an 11-10 setback at Penn early in the 2006 season.

But, in 2012, UMBC has dropped a two-goal decision to Robert Morris and an overtime heartbreaker to Fairfield. The loss to the Stags snapped a four-game winning streak in one-goal games, which dated back to a 6-5 loss to Princeton in 2009. Three days later, the Retrievers rebounded from the Fairfield disappointment to defeat No. 4 Maryland by a single goal, 8-7.

UMBC has won 16 of its last 21 one-goal decisions.

UMBC is now 15-6 in Don Zimmerman’s 19 seasons in overtime and in his career, Coach Zimmerman is 17-8 in extra time.

HOME, SWEET HOME: After 14 consecutive winning seasons at UMBC Stadium, the Retrievers were 1-6 at home in 2010. However, UMBC bounced back to go 4-1 last year and is 35-13 (.729) at home since 2006.

THE HITS JUST KEEP COMING: UMBC’s 45 wins over a four-year period (2006-09) is the most in the school’s history, surpassing the 42 wins recorded from 1974-1977. For the first time in school history, UMBC won 10 or more games in four consecutive seasons.

Programs With Most Victories, 2006-09
1. Virginia 58
2. Duke 56
3. Cornell 50
4. Syracuse 47
5. UMBC 45

DON’T LOOK BACK: UMBC is now in its 45th season of varsity men’s lacrosse with a record of 335-277 (.547). The Retrievers played their 600th intercollegiate match on March 18, 2012 at Maryland. They are 219-212 (.508) in their 31st year at the Division I level, achieving win No. 200
vs. Ohio State on March 21, 2009. Before the win over Towson on April 1, 2008, the last time the program was last over the .500 mark at the Division I level was when at the end of its third season (1983) when the record was 19-18.

POWERFUL POWER PLAY: UMBC has been nationally ranked in man-up percentage in four of the past six years. In 2009, the Retrievers led the country in man-up situations and set a school record by converting on 51.7% (30 of 57) of its opportunities.

Year    Man-Up Pct. Year-End National Rank
2009    .517            1st
2007    .464            5th
2006    .417            7th
2005    .444            2nd
2004    .379            10th

To date in 2012, UMBC has scored on 4 of 22 man-up opportunities. They did not commit a penalty in the opener vs. Robert Morris and have only been flagged six times in four games and all six have been minor fouls. UMBC has killed off of those man-down situations.

Junior attackman Rob Grimm is UMBC’s active scoring leader with 96 points (45-51-95). He needs 4 points to become the 29th player in school history to hit the 100-point plateau.  Grimm has points in 40 of 47 games played in his career.

Grimm’s Five-Point Games
March 31, 2009  2g, 3a vs. Towson
Feb. 19, 2011           1g, 4a at Presbyterian
March 5, 2011           3g, 2a at North Carolina
April 6, 2011           3g, 2a vs. Towson
May 3, 2012             4g, 1a at Hartford

HAT TRICKS: Zach Linkous recorded UMBC’s first hat trick of the season (his first career hat trick) and tacked on two more goals for UMBC’s second five-goal effort in the last two years vs. Rutgers… Junior Scott Jones had the most recent effort at Albany on April 16, 2012. Jones has five 3+ goal games (Presbyterian, Maryland, Albany, Vermont in 2011/Fairfield in 2012); Dave Brown has a pair (4g at Presbyterian, 3g vs. Binghamton, 2011) as does Rob Grimm (UNC, Hartford, 2011), Scott Hopmann (Presbyterian, ‘11) and Joe Lustgarten (Hartford, ‘11)  have one apiece.

A IS FOR ADAM: Junior goalkeeper Adam Cohen was named America East Conference Men’s Lacrosse Player of the Week for games ending Feb. 26, 2012. Cohen scored UMBC’s final goal of the day with 1:39 remaining at Rutgers and it is believed to be the first goal scored by a Retriever
goalkeeper in 32 years of NCAA Division I competition. He made seven fourth-quarter saves and turned a late Knight turnover into a one-man clear and goal to punctuate his first victory since a 8-7 overtime win at Vermont on April 24, 2010. Cohen’s first career win also occurred at Rutgers, a 6-5 victory on Feb. 28, 2010.

Cohen made six of his eight saves, allowing just one goal, in the fourth quarter in the 8-7 victory over Maryland.

ZACH PACK: Zach Linkous scored the game’s first goal vs. Rutgers, had two in the second quarter and another pair in the third stanza. Linkous, an America East All-Rookie team selection in 2011, scored a season-best two goals on two occasions in his freshman campaign an added a pair in the
opener vs. Robert Morris. His nine goals have already surpassed his season total (6) of 2011.

WHAT BROWN CAN DO FOR YOU: Dave Brown posted a six-point game (1 goal, 5 assists) at Albany on April 16. The five assists in a game was tied for sixth in the nation last season and was UMBC’s top-assist game since Drew Westervelt had six vs. Vermont on April 21, 2007. Brown opened the 2012 season with a pair of assists vs. Robert Morris and posted 2-2-4 in the win at Rutgers.

CROW ABOUT POE: Sophomore face-off specialist Phil Poe won 15 draws (15-6) vs. RMU in the opener and captured 15 more (15-4) on March 6 vs. No. 4 Maryland. The last Retriever to capture 15 face-offs in a game was Taylor Marino, who garnered 19 in America East Championship victory over Albany on May 3, 2008. Poe has attempted all but two draws through four games in 2012.

VACUUMS: Junior midfielder Neill Lewnes and sophomore LSM Nathan Klein each contributed five ground balls and two caused turnovers apiece at Rutgers. Lewnes, who led UMBC with 41 ground balls in 2011, is the club leader with 20 through four games in 2012. Junior defender Ethan Murphy scooped up a career-high six ground balls vs. Maryland.

FIRST-TIMERS: Senior defender Aaron Verardi and freshman attack man Derek Bertolini each scored their first career goals in the game vs. Fairfield. Bertolini produced his first career multiple-point game (1-1-2) vs. Maryland.

PTP: Sophomore midfielder Conor Finch produced his best game, er, quarter, vs. the Terrapins on March 6. He contributed three points (1g, 2a) in UMBC’s 5-1 15-minute surge and took a leading role in the comeback victory.

LOWS AND HIGHS: UMBC committed a season-low 12 turnovers in the game and caused a season-high 11 Fairfield miscues.

FINIISHING KICK: The Retrievers have been outscored, 19-13, in the first half this season, but have turned the tables in the second half, with a 23-14 advantage on the scoreboard.

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