No. 16 Towson Uses a Late 5-1 Run to Get Past UMBC

BALTIMORE- UMBC battled No. 16 Towson evenly through 43 minutes, but the visiting Tigers went on a late 5-1 run and defeated the Retrievers, 11-8, at UMBC Stadium. UMBC (2-1) dropped its first decision of the season, while the Tigers (1-2) won for the first time after losses to nationally-ranked North Carolina and Georgetown.

Senior midfielder Kristin Bilney (Ellicott City, Md./Mount Hebron) led the Retrievers with three goals, while junior midfielder Shannon Harkey (Purcellville, Va./Loudoun Valley) and freshman Sam Nolan (Fallston, Md./Fallston) scored two goals apiece. UMBC outshot Towson, 31-23, including 23-12 in the second half.

Bilney gave UMBC its lone lead of the game as she scored nearly five minutes into the game. But the Tigers won the ensuing draw and tied the game ten seconds later.

The Tigers took a 4-2 lead at the break, but Nolan scored her first career goal just 65 seconds into the stanza to bring the Retrievers to within one. Towson would take a pair of two-goal leads, but Bilney scored her third of the day on a free position shot at the 9:19 mark and Nolan tallied a man-advantage goal at 11:32 to tie the contest at 6-6.

But TU senior midfielder Kelly Custer, who led all players with four goals, broke the draw on a free position goal just two minutes later.

Towson would take an 8-6 lead, but Harkey gave the hosts hope by countering with a hard, low shot for a score with 10:16 remaining in the game. But the Tigers wrested control for good with three straight scores before Harkey tallied UMBC's eighth score with 1:34 remaining.

UMBC senior netminder Kendall Mason (Lloyd Harbor, N.Y./Cold Spring Harbor) made seven saves for the Retrievers, while Towson goalie Kelsea Donnelly made eight of her 10 stops in the second half.

The Retrievers return to action on Saturday, March 2, when they travel to Hamilton, N.Y. to face Colgate.

* * * *

BALTIMORE, Md. – Seniors Kelly Custer and Olivia Turner combined for seven goals to lead No. 16 Towson to an 11-8 win at UMBC. The Tigers earned their first win of the season.

“I thought we really came out and battled a tough UMBC team tonight,” said Coach Sonia LaMonica. “Kelsea Donnelly really came up big for us with some key saves.”

UMBC (2-1) struck first in the game as Kristen Bilney scored an unassisted goal at 25:02. The Tigers (1-2) got the equalizer at 24:52 as Custer scored off a pass from sophomore attacker Paige Duncan. Just over three minutes later, Custer struck again this time on an assist from junior midfielder Kelly Murkey.

UMBC tied the game at 2-2 on a goal from Abby Wilson at 17:05. The Tigers struck twice more before the half to take a 4-2 lead at intermission. Turner scored off an assist from graduate student attacker Jackie LaMonica and sophomore midfielder Christina Antonini tallied a free-position goal.

Towson out shot UMBC 11-8 in the first half while the Retrievers won four of the half's seven draw controls.

The two teams traded goals early in the second half as Turner's goal at 25:19 gave Towson a 5-3 lead. After UMBC made it a 5-4 game, Turner completed her hat trick at 21:48 to make it a 6-4 game. UMBC responded with a pair of goals, Sam Nolan's unassisted tally at 18:28 tied the game at 6-6.

Custer put Towson back on top at 16:25 with a free position goal. Sophomore attacker Sarah Maloof scored her team-leading seventh goal of the season at 11:58 to give Towson an 8-6 lead. Shannon Harkey pulled the home team to within one, 8-7 with her goal at 10:16.

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