Vermont Hands No. 22 UMass First Loss Of Season, 1-0
Sept. 17, 2006
AMHERST, Mass. - Vermont's T.J. Gore scored at the 88:07 mark of Sunday's match to give the Catamounts a 1-0 win over No. 22 UMass at Rudd Field. The win ended UMass' 13-game regular-season win streak that went back to last season. Gore's goal was just the second surrendered by the Minutemen (6-1-1) this season and ended the longest period of time UMass has gone without giving up a score in program history (566 minutes, 55 seconds).
"Vermont played extremly hard and worked for the win today," said UMass head coach Sam Koch. "They created a lot of chances today and capitalized on them when we could not."
Vermont (3-3-2) pressured UMass throughout the match which started late due to the Rhode Island/Hartford double-overtime early game of the day. With just two minutes remaining in regulations, UVM's Corey Bronner controlled a Zack Simmons (Durham, N.H.) punt and sent a deep clear from centerfield towards the left flank of the 18-yard box. Tyler Hasman controlled the ball and shot from 12-yards out at a charging Simmons. The ball deflected off Simmons' left foot directly to Gore who streaked down the middle of the field to follow the play.
With Simmons out of net and just one UMass defender in front of the goal mouth, Gore placed a shot into the bottom right corner for the game-winner.
"I thought overall we played well today and created offensive opportunities, but could not finish," said Koch. "We had a few mistakes out there and some miscommunication that hurt us, but played well and it was unfortunate to do so and not come away with a better result."
UMass outshot the Catamounts 12-to-9 for the game, including an 8-to-5 shots-on-goal advantage. Simmons made four saves on the day, while Vermont keeper Roger Scully made a eight saves.
The Minutemen were off to their best start since 1931 when UMass was a perfect 6-0 on the season. UMass had been undefeated in its last 13 consecutive regular-season games dating back to the end of last season.
Gore's goal was the first since UMass let up a goal in the second half against Boston University on August 27.
"I think this takes a way a lot of pressure that may have been around after not letting up a goal in such a long time," said Koch. "Despite that, I thought we played loose today and that was good. We have a good game coming up on Wednesday against New Hampshire and we are looking forward to getting back to work and bouncing back from today."
Despite the loss, UMass is still one of the top defensive teams in the country giving up just 0.24 goals per game.
"As well as we are playing defensively, we still need to find a way to score more goals," said Koch. "One of the positive signs we saw this weekend was the play of Mike DeSantis (Stoneham, Mass.) who showed he can be more of an offensive threat. I also thought Jason Scudamore (Shaker Heights, Ohio) helped create some chances which will help us as well."
Rhode Island won the tournament with a 1-1-0 showing this weekend. Vermont finished second by virtue of today's win over UMass as both teams were 1-0-1. With Friday's loss to UMass and today's draw against URI, Hartford finishes fourth.
UMass will return to action on Wednesday when the Minutemen host New Hampshire at Rudd Field. Kick-off is slated for 3:30 p.m., and admission is free to all!
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