ALBANY, N.Y.—Three Retrievers notched hat tricks, but the UMBC women's lacrosse team (10-6, 4-2 AE) came up just short in a 12-11 loss to eighth-ranked Albany (15-0, 5-0 AE) Saturday afternoon at John Fallon Field. The Great Danes locked up the America East regular-season title outright and will host next week's America East Championship, while the Retrievers earned the No. 3 seed.
UMBC will face second-seeded Boston University in the America East semifinals on Thursday, May 5. The Terriers were also 4-2 against league opponents but earn the higher seed because of their 13-9 victory over the Retrievers on April 2.
The game was tied at 4-4 with 10:28 left in the first half before Albany scored four unanswered goals over the next nine minutes to take an 8-4 lead. The Retrievers tallied twice over the final minute of the period and trailed, 9-6, at halftime.
The Great Danes maintained an 11-8 lead midway through the second stanza, but sophomore midfielder Lindsay Cox (High Bridge, N.J./Voorhees) and senior midfielder Amanda Pappas (Pasadena, Md./Chesapeake) scored back-to-back free-position goals to pull the Retrievers to within one, 11-10, with 10:54 remaining.
But Albany freshman midfielder Ariana Parker tallied what proved to be the game-winner less than two minutes later, finding the back of the net on an unassisted goal at the 9:05 mark.
Senior attack Erika Braerman (Fallston, Md./Fallston) completed her hat trick with 5:37 to go in the game to bring the Retrievers back to within one, 12-11, but Albany midfielder Rachel Burek controlled the ensuing draw, and the Great Danes were able to play keep-away for the remainder of the game.
Braerman led the Retrievers with four points on three goals and an assist and was named the America East Player of the Game. She added three ground balls and two caused turnovers. Cox and Pappas also scored three goals apiece.
Burek earned her team's Player of the Game nod with four points, also on three goals and an assist. Attack Taylor Frink, a Tewaaraton Trophy nominee, tallied six points on a goal and five assists, while Parker and attack Jodi Battaglia both posted hat tricks.
UMBC senior goalie Natalie Rau (Fallston, Md./Fallston) tallied two saves, while Anna Berman stopped eight shots for the Great Danes.
UMBC outshot Albany, 25-15, including 11-5 in the second half, and held a 12-9 advantage on ground balls, but the Great Danes won the draw control battle, 14-11.
Notes: Pappas and Braerman moved into a tie for 15th place all-time at UMBC with 134 career points… Braerman also moved into a tied for third with 57 career assists… Junior midfielder Alicia Krause's (Ellicott City, Md./Mt. Hebron/Duquesne) goal at the end of the first half was her 50th point of the season, giving the Retrievers a 50-point scorer four years in a row.