Three Earn Final Men's Soccer Awards of 2010

Release: 11/01/2010
Levi Houapeu's three goals against Vermont earned him his first Player of the Week honor of 2010.
Levi Houapeu's three goals against Vermont earned him his first Player of the Week honor of 2010.
Courtesy: America East Communications

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Three America East men's soccer standouts who helped their respective teams secure conference tournament bids were awarded the final weekly honors for 2010 on Monday afternoon. UMBC's Levi Houapeu (Germantown, Md./Watkins Mills) earned Player of the Week honors while Binghamton's Tommy Klim (Delmar, N.Y./Bethlehem) and New Hampshire's Steven Palumbo (Kingston, N.H./Sanborn Regional) shared Rookie of the Week accolades.

Houapeu recorded a hat trick to help UMBC secure the No. 2 seed for the upcoming America East Championship. Houapeu, a senior forward, tallied goals in the 33rd, 47th and 52nd minutes in the Retrievers’ 3-1 win over Vermont Wednesday. It is his third career three-goal game and the first in the conference since he accomplished the feat against Albany on Oct. 24, 2009. The reigning America East Midfielder of the Year, Houapeu ranks among national leaders with 27 points and 12 goals. 

Klim scored the game-winning goal in double-overtime in Binghamton’s 1-0 victory over New Hampshire Saturday. The win helped the Bearcats secure the No. 4 seed and a home quarterfinal match in the league tournament. Klim, a freshman back, delivered his his first career goal in the 106th minute and also contributed to a defense that recorded its fourth shutout of the year.

Palumbo, a repeat selection as Rookie of the Week, again delivered an overtime goal, which clinched a championship berth for New Hampshire. The goal, which gave UNH a 1-0 win over Albany Wednesday, came in the 91st minute and was his third game winner of the season. Palumbo, a freshman forward, is tied for the team lead among Wildcats with eight points on three goals and two assists this season.

The 2010 America East Championship kicks off with quarterfinal action on Saturday. Visit Championship Central for matchups, game times and much more.

Team Notes
Albany (5-10-1, 1-5-1 America East)
suffered a pair of losses to close out its 2010 campaign … The Great Danes were handed a 1-0 overtime loss to New Hampshire on Oct. 27 before dropping a 4-0 decision to Boston University on Oct. 30 … Despite posting a five-win improvement, UAlbany failed to qualify for the six-team America East Conference Championship for the second straight season and third time in four years ... The Great Danes could have snuck into the tournament as the sixth seed with a win over the Terriers after Vermont defeated Hartford, 2-0, earlier in the day ... Junior goalkeeper Adrian Foncette (Arima, Trinidad/Fatima) is leading the league in saves per game for the second straight season (5.62) … He also has a .768 save percentage and a 1.71 goals against average with three shutouts … Sophomore transfer Scott Kessler (Jericho, N.Y./Syosset/Marist), who most recently started the New Hampshire match, has an impressive 0.45 goals against average and an .889 save percentage with one shutout in limited action … Forward Bo Jelovac, one of eight seniors to play his last collegiate match against the Terriers, led the team in scoring for the second straight season … He accumulated eight points on three goals and two assists … Head coach Johan Aarnio’s squad is slated to return 15 letterwinners, including five starters, next season.

Binghamton (5-6-4, 3-2-2 America East) earned a top-four seed in the America East Tournament for the eighth consecutive season. The Bearcats will play host to No. 5 New Hampshire on Saturday at 7 p.m. with the winner heading to top-seeded Boston U. next Wednesday ... Redshirt freshman Tommy Klim (Delmar, N.Y./Bethlehem) scored his first career goal in Binghamton’s 1-0, double-overtime win over New Hampshire last Saturday. Junior midfielder Ryan Walter (Snyder, N.Y./Nichols) was credited with his team-high fifth assist of the season ... Redshirt freshman goalkeeper Chris Hayen (Oneonta, N.Y./Oneonta) recorded his fourth solo shutout of the season in the win over the Wildcats.

Boston University (11-4-1, 6-1-0 America East) had a stellar week on both sides of the field, posting identical 4-0 victories against Binghamton and Albany to earn the program’s 10th regular season title ... The Terriers won their second in the last three years and will next host either New Hampshire or Binghamton in the America East semifinals on Wednesday, Nov. 10 as the top seed ... 26th-year head coach Neil Roberts is now only two wins away from reaching the 300-win milestone ... Both senior Aaron O’Neal (Virginia Beach, Va./Kellam) and junior Ben Berube (Somerset, Mass./Somerset) scored a goal in each of the contests ... They are currently tied for the lead in goals scored with eight ... O’Neal also moved into sole possession of 10th-place all-time at Boston U. in career goals scored with 27, moving past assistant coach and former Major League Soccer star Francis Okaroh (‘87) ... Junior Michael Bustamante (Chelsea, Mass./Chelsea) posted two assists against Binghamton and a goal against Albany ... The Terriers’ backline held both teams to a combined 15 shots with only two of them on goal from the Bearcats ... As a team, they have outscored opponents, 32-14, and have posted eight shutouts on the year.

Hartford (5-10-0, 2-5-0 America East) dropped its final two games of the 2010 season, first falling to Stony Brook, 1-0, at home on Wednesday before suffering a 2-0 loss at Vermont in the season finale ... The Hawks missed out on the America East tournament for the first time in four seasons and posted the worst finish in league play since the 2004 season when they went 0-5-3 ... On Wednesday, Stony Brook’s Mladen Ramic’s header im the 56th minute was all his team needed to earn the 1-0 victory on Senior Day at Al-Marzook Field ... The Hawks have not defeated Stony Brook since 2006 and have been held scoreless by the Seawolves in six-straight matches ... On its home turf, Hartford finished 5-2 ... At Vermont on Saturday, Hartford needed a win or a tie to keep its season alive and earn the sixth and final spot in the upcoming conference tournament ... With the loss, the Hawks finished the season 0-8 on the road ... Goals were at a premium for the Hawks this season as they netted just 11 goals in 15 games and were shutout seven times ... Patrick Boucher (Cromwell, Conn./Cromwell) finished as the team’s leading scorer with seven points (three goals, one assist) while sophomore James Stamopoulos (Mississauga, Ontario/Port Credit Secondary) ranked second with six points on three goals ... The Hawks will return 100 percent of their scoring for next season ... Hartford loses three seniors - Bojan Delibasic (Novi Sad, Serbia/Svetozar Markovic Gymnasium), Sam Groves (Sutton, Mass./Worcester Academy) and Jamie Thomas (Edinburgh, Scotland/George Watson’s College) to graduation ... The trio amassed a career record of 27-29-13 and helped the team to three-straight America East tournament appearances.

UMBC (9-4-2, 4-1-2 America East) junior midfielder Andrew Bulls (Millersville, Md./McDonogh) scored on a direct kick in the 65th minute and junior netminder Dan Louisignau (Wilmington, Del./Concord/U. Virginia) made seven saves as the visiting Retrievers clinched second place and a first round bye in the America East Conference Tournament with a 1-0 victory at Stony Brook on Oct. 31... The Retrievers had clinched a playoff spot vs. Vermont on Oct. 27 as senior forward Levi Houapeu (Germantown, Md./Watkikns Mill) scored all three goals in a 3-1 Retriever victory at UMBC Stadium... UMBC has now won a season-high four straight games and completed the month of October at 6-1-2... The Retrievers earned their first win in five trips to Stony Brook earning a slight measure of revenge as the Seawolves defeated UMBC, 2-0, on the same surface for the 2009 America East title... Bulls scored the game’s lone goal in the 65th minute, as his free kick from just outside the box glanced off a Stony Brook defender... It was Bulls’ fourth goal of the season and his third in the last four games... The game appeared destined for overtime with two minutes to play when SBU’s Antonio Crespi drilled a header targeted for the corner of the net, but Louisignau laid out and snatched it out of the air to preserve the late Retriever lead... Louisignau is 7-1-2 with a 0.95 goals against average, but has allowed only seven goals in his last 904 minutes of action (0.70 gaa) since taking over the starting goalkeeping position... The Retrievers are unbeaten in their last five road contests (4-0-1)... The all-time series between UMBC and Stony Brook is now deadlocked at 5-5-0... Houapeu’s three-goal effort vs. Vermont on Oct. 27 was the third of his career (Drexel, 9/19/09, Albany, 10/24/09) and UMBC’s first hat trick of the 2010 campaign... He now has 12 goals in 16 games this season and just became the seventh player in school history to amass at least 30 (31) career goals... He has 80 career points (31-18-74) and has moved into a tie for fifth place on UMBC’s all-time scoring list... No player in the nation has more points in the past two seasons (70) than Houapeu... UMBC has earned a slot in the six-team America East Tournament in five of eight league seasons and will make back-to-back appearances for the first time... UMBC will host an America East tournament game for the first time since 2005... They were also the No. 2 seed that year, but fell to No. 3 Binghamton in the semis.

New Hampshire (7-4-5, 2-3-2 America East) finished the week 1-1-0 with a win against Albany (Oct. 27) and a loss against Binghamton (Oct. 30) … Steven Palumbo (Kingston, N.H.) scored his second consecutive game-winning goal in extended play, finding the back of the net just over a minute into overtime to lift the ‘Cats to a 1-0 overtime victory over the University at Albany on Wednesday afternoon … For Palumbo, the goal is his third game-winner this year … He ranks second on the team with seven points, on three goals and one assist … Colin O’Donnell (Hampden, Mass.) finished the contest with a game-high five saves, earning a conference-best seventh shutout in the win … The Wildcats held the advantage in shots, 13-10, including a 6-4 edge in the second frame … Palumbo led the ‘Cats with five shots, including three on goal … Marcus Barr (Wallingford, Pa.) chipped in with four shots … Against Binghamton, UNH held the Bearcats scoreless for more than 105 minutes of play, but surrendered a goal at 105:05 in overtime, falling 1-0 on the road …O’Donnell tied a career-high with seven saves in the loss … Despite giving up a goal in the contest, O’Donnell had not surrendered a goal in 248 minutes of play … He tops the America East in goals against average (0.52), save percentage (.887) and shutouts (7) … He also ranks second in both saves (62) and saves per game (4.43) … Additionally, the netminder ranks 6th and 9th nationally in save percentage and goals against average, respectively … Binghamton held the advantage in shots, 15-3, including a 6-2 edge in the first frame … The Wildcats wrap up their season Tuesday, November 2, when they take on Dartmouth College at 7 p.m. at Burnham Field.

Stony Brook (9-6-2, 3-2-2 America East), which is 8-2-3 over its last 13 matches, ended its regular season with a split of games last week, winning at Hartford and losing at home to UMBC...the Seawolves earned the No. 3 seed in this week’s America East Championship with a 3-2-2 mark, the program’s fourth-ever conference winning season...during conference play, Stony Brook went unbeaten on the road (3-0-1), but went winless at home (0-2-1)...Mladen Ramic (Belgrade, Serbia) scored the team’s lone goal of the week, his first of the came on a header off a corner kick from Mehdi Belakehal (St.-Hubert, Quebec), who notched his fourth assist of the season...Leonardo Fernandes (North Babylon, N.Y.) led the Seawolves in shots last week, including five on goal against UMBC...the Stony Brook defense held Hartford without a shot on goal last week, allowing Stefan Manz (Bronx, N.Y.) to earn his league-leading seventh shutout of the season...Manz then made four saves in the loss to his first full season as a starter, Manz is fifth in America East in goals against average, fourth in save percentage and tied for second in saves...Stony Brook will begin defense of its 2009 conference title Saturday when it hosts No. 6 seeded Vermont in the first round of the 2010 America East Championship at LaValle Stadium at 5 p.m.

Vermont (7-7-4, 2-4-1 America East)
went 1-1 on the week to close out the regular season with a record of 7-7-4 and 2-5-0 in league play ... The Catamounts dropped a 3-1 decision at UMBC and bounced back with a 2-0 win over Hartford in a must-win game for UVM to advance to the America East Tournament ... With the win over Hartford, Vermont head coach Jesse Cormier picked up his 55th career victory at the helm of the Catamounts … Cormier has averaged 7.8 wins per year in his seven-year stint at UVM ... Vermont is back in the America East Tournament for the sixth time under Cormier … The Catamounts are the No. 6 seed for the first time in the program’s history ... UVM has won the America East title four times, its most recent championship was in 2007 ... Vermont is 10-7-3 in tournament action ... In the only other meeting with Stony Brook in the tournament, the teams played to a 1-1 tie and SBU advanced on penalty kicks .. Dave Ramada picked up the win versus Hartford for Vermont, all three of his wins in net have been shutouts.