Nov. 1, 2010
BOSTON, MA - The fourth-seeded University of Massachusetts Boston women's soccer team will host fifth-seeded University of Southern Maine in the quarterfinals of the Little East Conference Tournament on Tuesday, November 2 at 2:00 p.m. at the Clark Athletic Center on the campus of UMass Boston.
The Beacons' number four seed in the LEC tournament allows them to host a conference quarterfinal match for the third straight season. UMass Boston is currently 12-4-3 on the campaign, including 4-3 in LEC play for the second highest regular season win total in school history. The Huskies are making their sixth appearance in the LEC tournament and are 5-14 and 2-5 on the season. The Beacons defeated Southern Maine, 4-1, in the teams' only meeting of the year on September 18 at the Clark Athletic Center. Junior forward Kristin Mulry (Holbrook, MA) and freshman forward Tayla Andrews (Plymouth, MA) each netted two goals apiece for UMass Boston, while sophomore forward Kathy Wise (Cape Elizabeth, ME) prevented the shutout for the Huskies to make it 4-1 with the lone USM goal. Freshman keeper Katie Coscia (Pittsfield, MA) made four saves for the Beacons, while junior keeper Kat Rothe (Leeds, ME) stopped 10 shots for Southern Maine.
UMass Boston is making its third tournament appearance and is 2-2 overall with a 4-0 quarterfinal win over UMass Dartmouth as the number three seed and a 4-0 semifinal loss at Eastern Connecticut State last season to go along with a 4-0 quarterfinal win over UMass Dartmouth as the number four seed and a 4-0 semifinal loss at Western Connecticut State in 2008. Southern Maine is 3-6 overall in LEC tournament play
The Beacons are enjoying one of their best seasons in school history, which included a six match unbeaten streak from September 16 to September 28. The team's statistics this year rank in the top five of almost every category including goals (45), assists (33), points (123), shutouts (eight) and goals against average (1.10). UMass Boston's defense has been one of the biggest reasons for its success this year. The team ranks third in the Little East Conference in goals against average and currently owns a streak of 350:36 minutes without a goal allowed from October 23 to October 30, which includes three consecutive shutouts. The Beacons saw one of its defenders earn LEC Defensive Player of the Week accolades with junior Samantha Place (Newton, NJ) earning the honor for September 19-25. The LEC Rookie of the Week award has been given to a UMass Boston player four times this season with Andrews receiving the hardware three time for the weeks of August 30 to September 7, September 12-18, and October 3-9, while freshman midfielder Samantha Cristoforo (Rockland, MA) was bestowed the honor for the week of October 24-30. Three of the Beacons' shutouts have come against LEC foes (1-0 at UMass Dartmouth on September 25, 1-0 vs. Plymouth State University on October 23 and 2-0 vs. Rhode Island College on October 30).
UMass Boston's offensive output has been on point as well with an average of 2.37 goals per game. The Beacons have five players with 10 or more points for only the second time in school history (2009), led by Andrews' 33 points, including 15 goals to rank third in the LEC and fourth in points and goals per game with 1.74 and 0.79, respectively. The rookie has been a force up front, tying the UMass Boston single-season record with six multi-goal games this year. Her 15 goal total currently ranks third all-time for goals in a single season while her five game-winning goals lead the Beacons and are tied for first in the LEC. She is flanked by Mulry, who was a Little East Conference First Team selection a year ago and is making an All-Conference bid this year as well with 18 points on eight goals and two assists to rank amongst the LEC leaders in points (T-10th) and goals (T-10th). She also has three game-winners to tie the rest of the league for third. Freshman forward Kelli Neville (Milton, MA) has had a productive season with 13 points on six goals and one assist. She ranks third on the team with six markers and netted the game-winning goal in the Beacons 1-0 victory over LEC foe UMass Dartmouth earlier in the year. Junior midfielder Molly Kuchar (Ashville, NC) has been one of the Beacons' top playmakers with four goals and four assists for 12 total points. She is the UMass Boston all-time leader with 17 career helpers. Cristoforo is also having an impressive rookie campaign with 11 total points on three goals and a team-leading five assists. Her five helpers rank tied for sixth overall in the LEC. Place, who was named to the Little East Conference Second Team last season, leads the UMass Boston defensive unit that has recorded eight shutouts on the season, one shy of the program record set a season ago. She is joined by freshman Ally Modzelewski (Newtown, CT), who has been a shutdown defender since making the transition from the midfield to the backline. In net, Coscia owns a .821 save percentage and a 1.13 goals against average to rank third and fourth in the conference, respectively. Her 12 victories and seven shutouts on the season are both new single-season records.