Houapeu, Kristek Earn Weekly Honors as Playoff Race Heats Up

Release: 10/26/2009
Courtesy: America East Communications

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- With positioning for the 2009 America East Men's Soccer Championship at full tilt, UMBC's Levi Houapeu (Germantown, Md./Watkins Mill) and Binghamton's Matt Kristek (Vestal, N.Y./Vestal) helped deliver key wins to earn weekly honors for the period ending Oct. 25.

Houapeu  earned his second Player of the Week honor of the season with four goals and a pair of assists to help UMBC clinch an America East tournament berth with two wins last week. The junior forward scored once and set up the game winner in a 2-1 victory at Boston U. and followed that with his second three-goal game of the season in a 5-1 victory over Albany. Houapeu ranks among that nation’s best with 39 points on 14 goals and 11 assists this season.

Kristek, the Rookie of the Week, clinched an America East Championship berth for Binghamton on a goal with just 21 seconds remainng to give his team a 2-1 win at Vermont Sunday. A redshirt freshman, Kristek has played in six games off the bench this season and has scored twice in three conference contests for Binghamton, which has an America East record streak of six straight championship game appearances on the line.

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Albany (0-12-3, 0-5-1 America East) will attempt to record its first win in its final match of the season on Oct. 31 when it hosts Boston University at 2 p.m. … The Great Danes will honor seniors Claudio Dantas (Orlando, Fla./Crystal Lake/Jefferson College) and Joe Hogan (Vestal, N.Y./Vestal) prior to the match. … The squad dropped a 1-0 decision to New Hampshire at Varsity Field and suffered a 5-1 defeat on the road against UMBC last week … Since Sept. 23, the Great Danes have lost five one-goal decisions and tied a pair of matches … Ian Peach (South Hempstead, N.Y./South Side) scored the team’s lone goal against the Retrievers … Goalkeeper Adrian Foncette (Arima, Trinidad/Fatima) made six saves in each of the two losses last week … The sophomore has an .802 save percentage and a 1.58 goals against average  … Foncette leads the league with 6.8 saves per game, while his save percentage ranks third in the conference … After ranking fifth in the nation and first in the conference in scoring in 2008, UAlbany is only averaging 0.40 goals per game this year … The team has not scored multiple goals in any contest … Bo Jelovac (Belgrade, Serbia/Sveti Sava School) and Peach have two tallies apiece … The other markers have come from Konner McNamara (Mississauga, Ontario/Iona C.S.S.) and David Hawksworth (Sheffield, England/All Saints Catholic).

Binghamton (8-6-1, 3-2-0 America East) has clinched a spot in the America East Tournament for the seventh consecutive season. The Bearcats can finish anywhere from No. 2 to No. 5, depending on what happens this next week ... redshirt freshman forward Matt Kristek (Vestal, N.Y./Vestal) scored the game-winning goal with 21 seconds remaining in Binghamton’s 2-1 win at Vermont on Saturday. In America East Conference play, Kristek has two goals in five games ... junior forward Scott Zobre (Poughkeepsie, N.Y./Poughkeepsie) tallied a career-high two assists in the game at Vermont. He now ranked second on the squad with four assists ... senior back Liam Carson (Broxburn, N.Y./Montagu Secondary) became the 13th Binghamton player this season to score a goal when he found the back of the net in the game at Vermont ... freshman forward Jake Keegan (Stormville, N.Y./John Jay) has two goals and an assist in the past three games.

Boston University (7-6-2, 1-4-0 America East) had its Senior Night last Wednesday spoiled by a 2-1 UMBC victory at Nickerson Field, dropping its fourth consecutive game in the process … The four conference losses tie the most recorded in a season by a Terrier squad, set in 2000 at 4-4-1 … The Terriers are also going to finish the conference slate with their second-ever losing record after finishing 2-3-3 in 2005 … They held the nation’s No. 4 scoring offense off the board through the first 70 minutes and even took the lead at 69:58 off the foot of Aaron O’Neal (Virginia Beach, Va./Kellam) … With his 10th goal of the season, he becomes the first Terrier since Joachim Kaland in 2001 to record at least 10 goals in one year … His 23 points are the most since 2004, when Roland Erlichman posted the same amount … The goal resulted from Ade Akinsanya (Sacramento, Calif.) playing the ball from the midfield up to Matthew Shea (Boston, Mass./Hanover), who crossed into the box for O’Neal to knock in for the score … UMBC rallied quickly though with goals at 70:28 and 74:40 for the victory … To advance to the America East tournament, the Terriers must either win or tie at Vermont (1-3-2 AE) on Wednesday, Oct. 28 … If the two teams tie, then they will need to win at Albany on Saturday, Oct. 31.

Hartford (6-6-2, 3-1-1 America East) had only one game last week, a 2-1 win over Binghamton on Wednesday in West Hartford … The Hawks remain unbeaten at home in conference play … Facing an early 1-0 deficit to the Bearcats, seniors Ivan Guarin (Periera, Colombia/White Plains/Herkimer CC) and Carlos Villa (Las Conchas, Guatemala/Arrayanes/San Jacinto) sparked the Hawks’ offense, netting two unanswered goals to secure the Hawks’ third win in the America East … Guarin tied the score at one goal apiece in the 40th minute with his third goal of the season, and Villa put the winning notch on the scoreboard at 78:07 when he connected on a feed from rookie James Stamopoulos (Mississagua, Ontario/Port Credit Secondary) … Villa leads the Hawks with eight goals and an assist for 17 points … Hartford outshot Binghamton in the contest by a margin of 18-6 … Senior keeper Nenad Cudic (Novi Sad, Serbia/Fourth Grammar School/Auburn University at Montgomery) faced three shots on goal with two saves, giving him a total of 45 for the season … The Hawks are one of five teams that have secured a bid to the 2009 America East Championship, marking Hartford’s third-straight postseason appearance … Hartford plays its final home game on Wednesday, October 28 against UMBC and then hit the road for the final contest of the 2009 campaign at Stony Brook on Saturday, October 31.

UMBC (12-3-0, 3-2-0 America East) junior forward Levi Houapeu (Germantown, Md./Watkins Mill) produced his second three-goal game of the season as host UMBC (12-3-0, 3-2-0 America East) clinched a spot in the America East playoffs with a 5-1 win over Albany at UMBC Soccer Stadium on Saturday… The Retrievers can finish no worse than fifth in the league… UMBC has now reached the America East post-season in 2003, 2005, 2007, and 2009… UMBC could move up as high as second place as they have a pair of road games at Hartford and Binghamton next week…Houapeu became the first Retriever to post multiple hat tricks in a season since Derek McElligott had a pair in 2001… His seven-point game (3 goals, 1 assist) is the most for a Retriever since McElligott tallied seven vs. Central Connecticut on Sept. 28, 2001…Junior midfielder Dustin Dzwonkowski (Baltimore, Md./Archbishop Curley) added the other two UMBC goals against the Great Danes… Sophomore forward Andrew Bulls (Millersville, Md./McDonogh), the nation’s leading scorer entering play last week, had a career-high three assists… Houapeu completed the hat trick in the 58th minute, as he converted John Paul Waraksa’s (Media, Pa./Strath Haven) pass… His previous three-goal game occurred on Sept. 19 in a 3-0 win over Drexel… Albany had only permitted two three-goal games during the season before UMBC’s outburst on Saturday… The five goals scored by UMBC is the most for a Retriever team in America East play since a 5-2 season ending win over Hartford in 2006 and ties UMBC’s best-ever offensive output in seven league seasons…  Dzwonkowski, who had two career goals entering the week, had tremendous back-to-back games, drawing an assist and scoring the game-winning goal at Boston, and then posting his first career two-goal effort vs. Albany…Head Coach Pete Caringi is two wins shy of 200 (198-124-37) in his 19 seasons at UMBC… Bulls now has 40 points on the season (15 goals, 10 assists), while Houapeu, who’s entering the week third in the nation in scoring, has 39 points (14 goals, 11 assists)… Houapeu’s 11 assists tie him with John Samarztis (1990) for the fourth-most in a single season at UMBC and are the most since Ty Engram recorded 13 helpers in 1999… UMBC’s 12 wins is the most since a 15-5-0 mark in 2000 and tied for the fifth-most in 24 years of Division I competition.

New Hampshire  (8-5-2, 5-0-1 America East) played Stony Brook University to a 1-1 draw Saturday afternoon at Lewis Fields … With the tie, the Wildcats clinch a share of the America East regular-season title for just the second time in program history, the first since 1994, when they shared the title with Boston University … In addition to the title, the tie also ensures the ‘Cats the No. 1 seed in the upcoming conference tournament … Colin O’Donnell (Springfield, Mass.) compiled six saves in the game … Senior back Joe Annese (Attleboro, Mass.) tallied the team’s lone score off a penalty kick from the right flank and into the left corner of the net past a diving Anthony Rogic at 9:21 in the first period … Stony Brook tallied 18 shots in the contest, while New Hampshire finished with 15 … Chris Banks (Westborough, Mass.) led the ‘Cats with nine shots, while Joe Corsello (York, Maine) notched two of his own … Earlier in the week, Banks netted his fourth goal in the last five games, propelling the University of New Hampshire men’s soccer team to its fifth straight win, defeating the University at Albany, 1-0, Wednesday afternoon at Varsity Field … Banks fired the shot from the top of the box over the stretching hands of Albany goalkeeper Adrian Foncette and into the back of the net … Alex Russell (Harisburg, Pa.) was credited with the assist on the play … Albany tallied 23 shots in the game, while New Hampshire notched 13 of its own … Banks led the Wildcats with four shots, while Brad Hilton (Merrimack, N.H.) tallied three and Sean Coleman (Stratham, N.H.) notched two … O’Donnell finished the day with seven saves, amassing his fifth shutout of the season … The Wildcats return to action on Wednesday, Oct. 28 when they play host to the Binghamton Bearcats, at 2:30 p.m. at Lewis Fields.

Stony Brook (4-9-3, 3-2-1 America East) went 1-0-1 last week, stretching its unbeaten streak to four games… Senior Damion Brown (Kingston, Jamaica/Francis Lewis) and freshman Leonardo Fernandes (North Babylon, N.Y./North Babylon) each had a goal in a 2-1 win over Vermont… Brown scored the game’s first goal and assisted on Fernandes’, giving the Seawolves a 2-0 lead… The goal from Fernandes was his fifth for the year… Playing on the road for the first time since October 7, the Seawolves tied first-place New Hampshire, 1-1… Redshirt freshman keeper Anthony Rogic (Boonton, N.J./Morris Catholic) made five saves for the Seawolves, who clinched a playoff berth for the first time since 2006… Freshman Berian Gobeil (Montreal, Quebec/Champlain College-Saint Lambert) scored his fifth goal of the season to tie the game at one… Stony Brook will wrap up the 2009 regular season at home against Hartford on Saturday night… Seniors James Palumbo (Carmel, N.Y./Mahopac), Oscar Leis (Ozone Park, N.Y./Archbishop Molloy), Collin Geoghegan (Lindenhurst, N.Y.) and Brown will be honored prior to Saturday’s match.

Vermont (1-9-5, 1-3-2 America East) traveled to Stony Brook on Wednesday where they dropped a 2-1 decision … The Seawovles jumped out to a 2-0 lead after 50 minutes, but Yannick Lewis (Toronto, Ontario) found the back of the net with less than four minutes remaining to cut the lead to 2-1 … Vermont then hosted Binghamton on Saturday … The Bearcats were able to prevail 2-1 when Matt Kristek scored with 21 seconds remaining in the game … Kyle Luetkehans (LaGrane, Ill.) recorded his first career-goal in the 66th minute when he put a header into the back of the net … Vermont wraps its regular season up by hosting Boston U. on this Wednesday … The Catamounts need to win the game to keep their America East Tournament hopes alive.