After losing a very physical battle in Vermont to start the conference season the UMBC men’s soccer team was challenged in another physical battle with conference foe Stony Brook, but this time they came out on top.
Just 12 minutes into the game UMBC’s star striker Andrew Bulls netted a ball in the lower right corner of the goal for the goal ahead and ultimately game winning goal. On the play Bulls kicked the ball forward for teammate Levi Houapeu and ran by him to get the ball right back with nobody around.
The goal was Bull’s 14th goal of the season it marked his 11th game with a point, tying a UMBC division one record mark set by Giuliano Celenza in 2000.
Andrew Bulls scored on a give and go in the 13th minute.
A few minutes later the defense suffered a big hit when center back Liam Paddock went down with a foot injury, he did not return. Pete Caringi made a slight adjustment to the back line, moving right back Vince Savarese to the middle, and then brought in Jason McCarron, who did not start the game due to a foot injury suffered in the game against Loyola two weeks ago, to play the left side back. Sean Rothe, who started the game at right back in place of McCarron, stayed in place next to Chris Williams.
But the defensive adjustment did not seem to hurt the Retrievers as freshman goalkeeper Phil Saunders only needed to save four shots in the game.
With the Retrievers ahead by one at the intermission UMBC looked to be ready to avenge their loss to Vermont a week ago and get their first conference win of the season.
In the 52nd minute Houapeu added an insurance goal after blasting a shot into the upper right corner from 23-yards out.
Houapeu recorded his ninth goal of the season with a 23-yard rocket into the upper right corner.
The 2-0 score lasted the rest of the game as UMBC bounced back for their tenth win of the season and more importantly their first conference win of the season.
They won’t have long to celebrate the win as they are set to play New Hampshire, who beat conference leader Boston U 2-1 minutes after the UMBC game final, on Saturday Oct 10. at 1:00.