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Road draw at UMBC extends Longwood’s unbeaten streak to three games

With four consecutive road games in four different states, Longwood women’s soccer has kept the interstates hot. The traffic in their own goal, however, has been nearly non-existent.

In their latest stop on a tour of the Northeast, the Lancers (1-4-2) extended their unbeaten streak to three games by grinding out another 0-0 double-overtime draw, this time at America East foe UMBC Thursday evening at Greene Stadium.

The shutout was Longwood’s second straight and extended the team’s shutout streak to 228 consecutive minutes, all of which have featured recently minted starter Jordan Horacek in goal. The senior keeper from Sunrise, Fla., added three more saves to her season total and dropped her goals against average to a Big South-leading 0.37 per game.

Longwood’s offense, buoyed five days of rest, did its best to reward its backfield’s stinginess by taking a season-high 30 shots, but UMBC (2-1-1) survived that onslaught to come away with a 110-minute stalemate.

“We did about as much as you can do to win a game, without winning the game,” said Longwood head coach Todd Dyer. “We started fast, we had tons of possession and created a lot of opportunities in the final third. We just couldn’t score the goal to win the game. So be it. We know exactly what we need to work on in training, and if we can put it all together, we should be a tough team to deal with in conference.”

Aggressive from the start, the Lancers generated their first shot attempt 40 seconds after the opening whistle and carried that pressure throughout. Thirteen of those shots were on target, but UMBC goalkeeper Abbey Cowles – a freshman in her first career start – did her best Horacek impression with 13 saves, matching the Longwood goalkeeper’s record-setting performance from this past Sunday’s 0-0 draw at Western Carolina.

Cowles’ heroic performance in goal kept UMBC in the game from whistle to whistle, with the keeper making eight saves in the first half, two more each in the second half and the first overtime, and one more with less than four minutes to play in the final period. She also helped UMBC survive a season-high 10 Longwood corner kicks and a particularly aggressive night from Lancer graduate midfielder Madison Lockamy, who attempted a career-high eight shots and put four of those on goal.

Meanwhile, Horacek had a comparatively easier night, facing only three shots thanks to the efforts of a stingy backfield led by starters and 110-minute marathon defenders Brooke Bonner, Kylie Cahill and Kaley Unger. Those three played every minute of the double-overtime draw and held UMBC without a shot on goal for 37 minutes in the second half and nearly all of overtime, including a blocked free kick from just outside the box in the final 20 seconds.

The draw at UMBC marks Longwood’s final trip to the Northeast this season, as the Lancers return to the Commonwealth this Sunday for a rivalry renewal against Liberty this Sunday, Sept. 12, at 1 p.m. in Lynchburg. That game will be Longwood’s final non-conference game as well, as the Big South opener at Winthrop follows on Saturday, Sept. 18 in Rock Hill, S.C.