BALTIMORE, Md. - Keith Obloj made the pass, Nick Williams scored the goal and Mark DeGroat came up with the save of the game as the 14th-ranked Tigers put all that together to beat 13th-ranked UMBC 8-7 at UMBC Stadium Wednesday night.
The win pushed Towson to 5-4 overall while the Retrievers dropped to 4-4. It was the Tigers' fifth win over UMBC in the last six meetings. Towson now has a 26-11 lead in this local rivalry.
The Tigers jumped out front on Obloj's unassisted goal with 8:47 left in the opening period. Thirty-four seconds later Kyle Fiat made it 2-0 on a solo goal. Brendan Mundorf proved to be most of UMBC's offensive fire power early on. He got the Retrievers on the scoreboard at the 5:18 mark and then scored again as time expired in the period but not before Phil Grillo, who transferred to Towson from UMBC two years ago, beat Retriever goalie Jeremy Blevins twice as the period ended 4-2.
Towson couldn't find the goal in the second period. The Retrievers took advantage of that scoring drought to tie the game on the strength of Terry Kimener's goal at the 9:04 mark and Evan Kay's underhanded low shot with 2:44 remaining to end the half 4-4.
UMBC's run continued in the third quarter. Andy Gallagher gave the Retrievers a 5-4 lead when he scored unassisted just 1:27 into the period.
Brian Vetter finally broke Towson's dry spell with an unassisted marker with 5:32 left in the third quarter to knot the score for the second time. Thirty-five seconds later Grillo put Towson back on top when he scored on the crease off a pass from Steve Mull, the senior attackman who has returned to duty after being sidelined with an ankle injury for the past three games.
Williams gave the Tigers a little more breathing room when he tallied unassisted from 17 yards out for a 7-5 Tigers' lead that held up for the rest of the period.
The Retrievers rallied in the fourth quarter. Mundorf trimmed Towson's lead to one with an unassisted goal at the 9:38 mark. Kay then scored his second goal of the game off a pass from Kimener with 5:39 on the clock to tie the contest for the third time, 7-7.
After Towson DeGroat came up with two big saves the Tigers went back on offense. Williams found the long range again. After taking a pass from Obloj, Williams went high left from 13 yards out to score what proved to be game winner with 2:30 left.
The Tigers controlled the ensuing faceoff, thanks to a ground ball by Kyle Smedley. Towson attempted to run the clock but lost possession with 1:30 left. After trading possessions because of some aggressive defense on both sides, the Retrievers found themselves in front of Towson's goal. That's where DeGroat stuffed a point blank shot at him by Mundorf with three seconds left to preserve the victory.
Grillo paced the Tigers against his old teammates with three goals off eight shots. DeGroat finished with 12 saves. His counterpart, Blevins, had seven stops.
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