Senior night at #15 UMBC did not go as well as the Retrievers would have liked as they lost to #9 Towson 13-8. The Tigers started off real slow but produced a six-goal third quarter to pull away for the victory. Justin Berry was outstanding on face-offs as he pushed through almost every player UMBC through at him. He is just short of the all-time record in face-offs for Towson. The game featured two former Johns Hopkins head coaches in Don Zimmerman and Tony Seaman. Coach Seaman said of his team, “We run real well and get up and down the field. We certainly give the fans their money’s worth.”
UMBC started hot scoring the first four goals of the game. Senior Josh Hahn got it started when he drove down the right hand side and bounced one past Towson goalie John Horrigan. Malik Lopez scored 40 seconds later when the defense completely lost him. The Retrievers got the next goal with Charlie Gibson finding Luke Gilbert who was a step ahead of his defender coming from behind. Gilbert stuck it high to go up 3-0. Towson did have a good opportunity to put a point on the board with an empty net on a failed clear but goalie Steve Cusa magically still managed to get a piece of it almost 10 yards outside the cage. UMBC added another on man-up after Towson was hit with a slashing penalty. Again it was Hahn who put it high. Towson finally scored with 5:12 remaining in the first quarter. Loyola transfer Kyle Campbell converted a feed from Brad Reppert to make the score 4-1. Towson scored two more in the final 1:15 to pull within one. Ryan Obloj was playing with the ball behind when Cusa started to play him. Obloj quickly hit Brad Reppert who scored before Cusa could get back into position. On the next possession Obloj again dodged from behind but this time he kept it and threw it in for a goal.
The second quarter started with a quick goal by Towson to even the score. Josh Tankersley stepped through a weak check and nailed a bounce shot. UMBC did score again when they went two men-up. Towson was hit with a slashing penalty on their ride and then again in the defensive end. Hahn made the most of it and made the score, 5-4, which is how it would stay until half. Towson was man-up at the end of the quarter and held possession so no face-off was needed to start the second half.
Towson wasted their EMO opportunity when Brad Monaco took a very questionable shot from 16 yards out. UMBC took over possession and killed the penalty but the next penalty they had, they could not kill. Reppert took a lefty crank to tie the game at 5. Towson scored again a minute later as Josh Cornett threaded a pass to Obloj who knocked it in. Towson scored despite the fact that UMBC had seven defenders on the field. The Retrievers hung in there with Joey Kestermann making a strong move to goal and scoring despite being tackled. The flag was waved. Up to this point the game looked like it was going to be real close but Towson eventually showed that they are the better team by scoring the next seven goals and shutting out UMBC for almost 20 minutes. Josh Tankersley scored two in a row both on the extra-man. The first was a bounce shot from about 15 yards out and the second was a real hard shot high. Campbell was next quick-sticking a feed from Obloj. Then Obloj got one himself when he took short-stick freshman middie Pat Muston from behind. You knew who was going to win that battle.
Towson opened up the fourth quarter still hot. Myers placed a bounce shot perfectly under the cross bar. Then Jay Horowitz took a step away from his defender and whipped one in low. Towson scored their final goal with nine minutes remaining on a highlight reel play. Obloj moved the ball with a behind-the-back pass to Campbell who took a long bounce shot to score. Towson’s attack is starting to develop into one of the most dangerous in the country. UMBC managed to score two more goals but they never made a serious run.
UMBC plays at Army on Saturday 1:30pm. Towson is at Drexel on Saturday at 1pm. Drexel is looking for its first win in America East this year.