UMBC plays its first road game in one month and travels out of the state of Maryland for the first time in the 2014 season when the Retrievers make their first-ever visit to High Point University to take on a 5-2 Panther squad at Vert Stadium on Saturday, March 15. The Retrievers are 3-2, after completing a four-game homestand with a 15-6 victory over Mercer on Tuesday, March 11, while High Point has won five straight, including a narrow 9-8 win over VMI on March 8. Video streaming is available via the Big South Network and live stats will be provided via High Point’s website.
RETRIEVER UPDATE: UMBC outscored visiting Mercer, 7-0, in the third quarter and the Retrievers went on to defeat the Bears, 15-6, at UMBC Stadium on Tuesday evening. Five Retrievers posted three or more points – led by four points on two goals and two assists by sophomore midfielder Jack Gannon. Attackman Matt Gregoire was the lone UMBC player to tally three goals and the senior continues to lead the squad with 13 scores in five games. UMBC won its third game in the last four outings and improved to 3-2 on the season. UMBC outshot Mercer, 16-1, in the third period, and 49-28 for the contest. Red-shirt freshman goalkeeper Connor Gordon made 10 saves and allowed six goals in 54:14 of work. Gordon, who entered play sixth in the nation with 13.5 saves per game, has 10 or more saves in all five outings in 2014. Senior midfielder Zach Linkous, junior midfielder Ty Kashur and freshman attackman Grant Searfoss all tallied two goals and an assist for the Retrievers.
Gannon now has six goals and four assists in his last three games. Searfoss played in just his second game of the season and scored his first three collegiate points versus the Bears. The 15 goals scored by UMBC was a season high. Gregoire now has nine career hat tricks, including three in his last four games.
PANTHER UPDATE: High Point is riding a five-game winning streak after losing their first two games of the season. They are also in the midst of a five-game homestead, and have not lost at home this season. For the second time this season the Panthers swept the Atlantic Sun weekly awards last week. Graduate student Stevie Kirkup was named the Atlantic Sun Offensive Player of the Week and redshirt-junior Austin Geisler was named the Defensive Player of the Week. Kirkup, a transfer attackman from UNC, scored five goals on seven shots in a 9-8 win over VMI last Saturday. Geisler had nine saves in the same game, and an even more impressive 17 saves against Michigan in a 9-7 victory. High Point’s last six games have all been decided by three goals or less and the Panthers have won their five contests by a total of eight goals. Sophomore attackmen Matt Thistle and Dan Lomas lead HPU in scoring with 21 points (4 goals, 17 assists), and a team-best 17 goals on the season, respectively.
WHO’S UP NEXT: UMBC is in the midst of a stretch where they play five times in 15 days. As spring break begins for the university, the Retrievers return to the field on Tuesday evening, March 18 when they visit cross-town rival Towson. Game time at Johnny Unitas Stadium is set for 7:00 p.m.