FanPost

Terps go 4 for 4 on Friday but I'm only writing about 3 of them


I’m sure there will be plenty about the men’s basketball 73-61 win over IUP elsewhere on this site so I’ll confine my comments to my area of observation. Let’s start with field hockey. Fresh off their 2-1 win over Duke, the Terps came into the ACC semifinals looking for a bit of payback against UVA a team that had beaten them 3-2 earlier in the season in a game in Charlottesville. Natalie Hunter got the start in goal for Maryland coming back from an injury that kept her off the field for the two previous games. The Terps pressed the action early on and notched their first penalty corner in the 11th minute. Senior co-captain Janessa Pope inserted and was able to score on the rebound after the initial shot was saved. Maryland continued to press and control the play and Pope was able to get off another shot just over a minute later but the UVA keeper made the save.

As they had against Duke the Terps kept good control of the play and both teams’ opportunities were limited until late in the half. Counter attacking after a Virginia shot on which Hunter earned her second save of the half, Megan Frazer played a lovely cross from the left to Lindsey Puckett who was able to redirect it from the right side of the cage giving UMD a 2-0 lead they would take into halftime.

Maryland came out firing on all cylinders from the star of the second half drawing two corners in the first 7 minutes. Although the Cavalier goalie saved the first, the second, inserted by Katie Gerzabek and stopped by Harriet Tibble was blasted into the right side of the cage by freshman Sarah Sprink in the 43rd minute. Not satisfied with a three goal lead, the Terrapins continued to force the action pressuring the UVA goal and forcing their keeper to come up with 2 of her 7 saves in the 44th and 45th minute and earning another penalty corner in the 46th minute. With the same trio working as the previous corner, the Terps were again successful with Sprink’s shot deflecting off the goalie’s left and into the net.

Sprink was also effective on the defensive side of the field as well. Although Paige Selinski would score just over midway through the second half the outstanding defensive efforts of Sprink and Pope held the UVA Olympian in check throughout. Coming into the semifinal, Selinski had averaged just over seven shots per game. This was the only shot Selinski would manage and would bring the Cavs to within three at 4-1. Earlier, Sprink also contributed a fine block off a UVA corner.

The goal didn’t appear to shake the Terps confidence and Sprink’s day was not quite complete. Maryland earned its last corner in the 68th minute and although Ali McEvoy’s shot was saved, Sprink was in perfect position to take the rebound and flick it over the UVA goalie to complete her hat trick and secure the Terps final margin of 5-1. In a development that will surprise no one who follows the sport, Maryland will take on the top seeded University of North Carolina who knocked off Wake Forest 4-0 in the other semifinal for the ACC Championship at 1 pm on Sunday. The game will be played in Chapel Hill and should be available for viewing on Comcast SportsNet.

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The Maryland women’s soccer team took to a pitch of a different sort advancing to the championship game of the ACC tournament with a 2-0 win over third seeded Wake Forest. The Terps welcomed back junior forward Haley Brock returning after her two game suspension from a red card issued in the regular season overtime loss to Miami. Brock made her presence felt very early scoring just 4 and a half minutes into the game off a pass from Becky Kaplan and staking the Terps to an early 1-0 lead. Maryland controlled most of the play throughout the first half with 5 corner kicks and 4 shots until a late flurry by the Demon Deacons led to 3 corners and 4 shots in the last 5 minutes of the half. Red shirt freshman goalie Rachelle Beanlands was able to save two shots, with a third going wide and the Terps defense able to clear the other. Maryland went into halftime leading 1-0.

The Terrapins came out of the locker room and put immediate pressure on the Wake goalie and defense with Brock getting off a shot just 27 seconds in and the save leading to a failed corner. In the 53rd minute, Senior Becky Kaplan would collect the ball near midfield and drive the ball into the Wake zone. Her first shot went off the post but she quickly attacked the rebound and scored giving the Terps a 2-0 lead that would hold up and propel them into Sunday’s final. There, they will take on a somewhat surprising UVA team that top seeded Florida State 4-2 in the other semifinal. The game will be played Sunday at 1 pm at Wake Med Soccer Park in Cary NC and you can watch it on ESPNU.

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In the final match of the day the Maryland volleyball team took a four set thriller from Wake Forest avenging an early season loss in Winston-Salem. The first set got off to a solid start for the home team. The Terps scored first breaking Wake’s serve on with Ashleigh Crutcher notching the first of her 23 kills for the night. Foreshadowing her 4th set heroics, freshman Kelsey Hrebenach held serve to put the Terps up 2-0. Despite a break by the Demon Deacons, Maryland raced out to a 6-1 lead behind solid serving from freshman Mackenzie Dagostino. The visitors were able to slowly climb back into the set closing to 10-8 on a service ace. Maryland was able to stretch the lead back up to five at 14-9 behind Mary Cushman’s serving but once again Wake chipped away at the lead pulling to within one at 20-19 and again at 21-20. The Terps took three of the next four points reaching set point on a kill by Crutcher. But this group seems to like to make life interesting for the fans and the visitors again closed the gap to 24-23. Fortunately for MD fans, that’s as close as they would get as Crutcher closed the set 25-23 with an emphatic kill.

The second set stared much better for the Demon Deacons with the teams trading the first 8 points. After tying the score at 4 with Dagostino serving the Terps took the next 3 points and appeared poised to take control of the set and the match. Trailing 10-7, however, Wake was able to rattle off 5 straight points and pull out to a 12-10 advantage. A kill by Hrebenach briefly stemmed the momentum pulling the Terps within one. Holding a one goal edge at 14-13, Wake put together another run and shot out to an 18-14 lead. They were able to maintain this margin and close out the set 25-20.

In an eerie mirror image of the first set, the Terps ran out to a 6-1 lead in set number three. And as they did in that first set the visitors hung around until they were able to tie the score at twelve. Once again, Crutcher had the big kill to keep Wake from capturing the lead. Wake managed to build on their momentum and got their nose in front at 17-15 but Maryland was able to rally back and tie the score behind a kill from Adreene Elliott and a Wake Forest error. With the score tied at 20, back to back kills from Crutcher gave the Terps a little breathing room and a 22-20 lead. The teams traded 2 point runs and, trailing 24-22 the Deacs were able to stave off one set point. However, a tip kill along the right sideline just in front of the 8 foot line by freshman Emily Fraik gave the Terps another 25-23 set victory.

The fourth set is where events turned thrilling for Maryland fans. As they had in the second set, the competitors split the first 8 points. This time it would be Wake Forest that would wrest control of the set taking 6 of the next 7 points to move ahead 10-5. The Demon Deacons not only held this working margin but extended their lead to nine at 21-12. Despite a push to pull within five at 21-16, it looked as though the Terps were destined to play in their third consecutive 5 setter in the Comcast Pavilion. After Wake reached set point at 24-18, the match turned into the Kelsey Hrebenach show and became heart racing for Terrapin fans. After whacking a kill on a Wake Forest serve to bring the Terps to 24-19, the freshman took the ball and stepped to the service line where she rattled off the next 7 points including 4 service aces to give Maryland a remarkable 26-24 win and wrap up the match at 3 sets to one. Hrebenach was not the only hero for the Terps: Ashleigh Crutcher had 23 klls marking the third straight match in which she exceeded the 20 kill mark; Senior Remy McBain had a double-double with 22 assists and 10 digs while her freshman partner Mackenzie Dagostino added 24 assists and 9 digs; fellow freshman Amy Dion led the Terps with 15 digs including 8 in the fourth set; another freshman Emily Fraik led Maryland with a .375 hitting percentage; and the game also marked the return from injury of freshman outside hitter Kamrin Gold who added 2 kills in the 4th set.

Maryland wraps up their home schedule Sunday with a match at 1 pm against Duke. The Terps will also be acknowledging the careers of graduating seniors Remy McBain and Caitlyn Adams.

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