Tigers smother rival UMBC
The Tigers scored two goals in the first minute and 10 seconds of their contest with the UMBC Retrievers en route to an 11-3 romp at a damp and rainy Johnny Unitas Stadium Wednesday.
Ashleigh Rorhback and Sarah Appelt scored 45 seconds apart to give Towson an advantage that they wouldn’t relinquish. After allowing just five goals in their season-opening victory over Oregon, Towson locked down their defense and limited the Retrievers to a season-low three goals.
“I told the girls in the locker room that I was really proud of their performance today,” Head Coach Sonia LaMonica said. “I’m so impressed with how our defense stepped up today. We had some key matchups and Michelle Dufault had an incredible game. She does not play like a freshman whatsoever. Alexa Demski had a tough matchup today against Lindsay Cox, but our defense as a whole did an amazing job and were able to come up with some plays, reading passes and going for those interceptions.”
The Tigers forced 12 UMBC turnovers and controlled the flow of the game on a wet afternoon. While the conditions didn’t stop Towson from reaching double digits in goals for the second time in as many games this season, LaMonica praised her team for playing well considering the rainy and cold conditions.
“Obviously the conditions aren’t optimal, but they fought really hard against a good UMBC team, so I’m very proud of their performance today,” she said. “They were obviously very excited to see UMBC after coming up short against them last year, so they had that fire coming right out of the gates. It gave us a ton of momentum [to score twice early], and I thought we carried that through a good portion of the game.”
Towson scored the first three goals of the game and led 5-1 at halftime. At the half, UMBC made a goalie change, replacing starter Kendall Mason with backup Anna Barnett. Mason returned late in the second half after Barnett was called for a yellow card, and allowed eight goals in all.
The Tigers outshot UMBC 23-17 and successfully cleared 15-16 attempts. Seven different Tigers scored for Towson, and Andi Raymond led the way with a career-high four points. Raymond tallied her fourth and fifth goals of the season and assisted on the Tigers’ fifth and sixth goals. Raymond’s performance in the first two games of the season has impressed her head coach.
“Andi has stepped up and has been a huge part of this awesome distribution of scoring,” LaMonica said.
The sophomore was understandably excited about her first two games and said she hopes to continue playing at a high level throughout the rest of this season.
“I am really happy but going forward I just want to keep it up, no holding back, and I hope we can keep winning,” Raymond said.
The Tigers exacted a bit of revenge on the Retrievers, after UMBC opened the 2011 season by beating Towson 10-9 in Catonsville.
“It feels awesome to come out this year after losing to them by one goal last year and hand it to them,” Raymond said.
Towson is back in action Saturday as play their first road game of the season at Loyola. The face-off is set for 1 p.m.