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No. 7 Maryland field hockey vs. No. 1 Iowa preview

The matchup will be Maryland’s second consecutive meeting with a team ranked in the top-five.

Photo courtesy of Maryland Athletics

The No. 1 ranked Iowa Hawkeyes bring their unblemished record to College Park for a matchup with the No. 7 Maryland Terrapins at the Field Hockey and Lacrosse Complex.

Maryland (7-3) comes into its second consecutive matchup against a top-five program after dropping its previous game on Thursday to Northwestern by a score of 3-1.

Iowa (10-0) has defeated four different top 15 teams this season and will look to add Maryland to its impressive resume.

These two teams met twice last season, with each team stealing a victory on the road. Maryland also lost the 2020 Big Ten Championship to Iowa with a 3-0 defeat. The Terps lead the all-time series with a dominating 10-1 record over the Iowa.

Sunday’s game will begin at noon and can be streamed on BTN Plus.

Now let’s look at the Iowa Hawkeyes that will come to College Park.

No. 1 Iowa Hawkeyes (10-0)

2020 record: 12-6 (5-3 Big Ten)

The Iowa Hawkeyes are led by head coach Lisa Cellucci, who’s entering her eighth season at the helm of her alma mater’s program.

Cellucci has been a member of Iowa’s coaching staff for 20 years and has amassed a successful 251-160 record. Under Cellucci’s tutelage, the Hawkeyes have consistently ranked within the top 20 and have been a consistent contender in the Big Ten.

The Hawkeyes all-time save leader earned back-to-back Big Ten Coach of the Year awards in 2019 and the 2021 season. Cellucci is instrumental in the high regard of Iowa’s program, as she brings valued experience and insight to her club.

Players to know

Ellie Holley, graduate midfielder, No. 7 — Holley has appeared in every game for the Hawkeyes this season. The attacking midfielder leads Iowa in goals on the season, registering eight goals for her club. The versatile United Kingdom native is a premier playmaker for the Hawkeyes, recording seven assists on the season. She's the biggest factor on offense for a high-flying Iowa offense, and Maryland will need to keep an eye out for her come Sunday.

Ciara Smith, senior forward, No. 17 — The Virginia native ranks second on Iowa in goals on the season, with a respective six goals in the Hawkeyes 10 total games. The senior recorded an impressive stat line in the Hawkeyes Sept. 26, 4-0 victory versus Penn State, recording two shots, one shot on goal, and one goal scored.

Maddy Murphy, graduate forward, No. 26 — Murphy returns for her postgraduate season as one of the many multi-dimensional athletes on a club with little to no weaknesses. She has registered three goals on the season and ranks second in assists with five assists on the season. The aggressive forward leads the Hawkeyes in shots this season with 30 shots at the cage.


Penalty corners. Iowa has been proficient in generating penalty corners for themselves, as they have doubled the number of penalty corners they have registered thus far in the season. Iowa is currently outscoring their opponents in penalty corners with a 58-29 advantage.


Shot percentage. With an undefeated season filled with essentially no weaknesses, Iowa could improve their shooting percentage to improve their current percentage. The undefeated Iowa Hawkeyes currently possess a 23.6%, which is surprising, given the amount of success they have celebrated. Iowa averages 18.2 shots attempted per game and will look to improve their ability to convert its shots into goals, to enhance an already well-oiled machine on offense.

Three things to watch

1. Can Maryland end Iowa’s undefeated quest? Maryland will look to give Iowa its first loss since its matchup with the North Carolina Tar Heels in last season’s Final Four. Maryland has found great success when its athletes can control the tempo and allow its athletes to shine in transition. The Terps offense will look to bounce back after an uncharacteristic performance versus Northwestern on Thursday, in which they didn’t register a goal until less than a minute remaining in the contest.

2. Can freshman Hope Rose continue her recent streak? The star freshman has recorded four goals in Maryland’s past three games, which has been a positive sign in her young and bright future with the Terps. Rose’s talent is undeniable and she figures to play a prominent role in Maryland’s success this season. The Dauphin, Pennsylvania native will look to be a factor once again as the Terps look to pull off the upset over Iowa.

3. Will Maryland’s defense turn into instant offense? Maryland has thrived when its defense is flying around and making plays to get the ball back on offense to allow its offense to display its immense talent and potential. The Terps’ defensive pressure has been paramount to victories, unleashing their athletes to smother their opponents and force turnovers. When Maryland turns defense into instant offense, Terps’ midfielder Brooke DeBerdine and the rest of the crew are at full force. Maryland will need to focus on getting Iowa in transition if it wants to have a chance to come away with a win at home.