Maryland had their annual Pink Game against American University on Wednesday night in College Park to help raise money and awareness for breast cancer. There was no need to raise awareness about how dangerous Maryland was coming into the game. The Terps had outscored their opponents 29-3 in their previous four games. Eagles are an endangered species and with the plenitude of shots that Maryland took on Wednesday night, you would have thought that they were trying to make them extinct.
It was all Maryland early on. Maryland drew a penalty corner less than four minutes into the game. American defended the first successfully but Maryland got another chance at a corner and made the second one count. Katie Gerzabek made a great, unselfish pass to Sarah Sprink who buried it for the goal. Maryland got out on the fast break after a steal and drew their third penalty corner in two minutes. American's goalie Kate McBeath was active early making two saves on hard shots off of Maryland penalty corners.
Maryland drew their fourth penalty corner of the half with a little under 28 minutes left in the first half. Sprink's shot off of the corner was blocked but the Terps drew another corner. On the second corner, Fluharty shot was off the mark. With 25:25 left in the first half Maxine Fluharty found Alyssa Parker who got it past McBeath for Maryland's second goal of the game. Anna Dessoye scored her 10th goal of the season with 20:51 left in the first half to push the lead to three. 15 minutes into the game, the Terps were out-shooting the Eagles 9-0.
Sprink has been a force on both sides of the ball for the Terps. She has scored in four of Maryland's last five games and anchors the Maryland defense. Maryland head coach Missy Meharg has said the way that Sprink sets up Maryland's offense from the back line is akin to setting up an attack on a chessboard. "She's a field general," Coach Meharg said following the game.
Moira Putsch also notched her 10th goal of the season after she lofted a shot into the goal with 11:48 left in the half. With nine minutes remaining in the first half, Maryland led 16-1 in shots and 4-0 on the scoreboard. Putsch could not be stopped and she accelerated on the fast break and scored on a beautiful shot into the right corner of the American goal with just over three minutes left to go in the half. Maryland was up 5-0 going into the half and was out-shooting American 21-1.
Maryland wasn't done taking the talons out of the Eagles however. Sprink got her second goal of the game on a shot on the penalty corner just two and half minutes into the second half and the rout was on. McBeath was having a career game but for the wrong reasons. Going into the second half, she had already allowed a season-high five goals and had 11 saves. Maryland had McBeath in a shooting gallery all game long. She finished with 14 saves for the game.
Parker got her second goal of the evening with just over 27 minutes left to play in the game. Emma Rissinger got in on the action with a goal with under 18 minutes to play off a feed from Alyssa Parker. That pushed the score to 8-0.
American's leading goal scorer, Grace Wilson, ended the shutout with her sixth goal of the season which came off a penalty corner. Jill Genovese, the heir apparent to Maryland goalie Brooke Cabrera, allowed the goal with 14:46 left in the game. That would be the last goal of the game as Maryland's subs kept the score at 8-1 until the final horn.
Maryland has been on a torrid pace offensively and had three players with least two goals in the game. On the season, the Terps now have four players with double digit goals on the season. The Terps face #14 Iowa on Saturday and if they win, they will be guaranteed no less than a share of the Big Ten regular season title.