Even though it was outplayed for the majority of regulation, Maryland women’s soccer continued to fight until the end.
In the 89th minute, Ohio State was threatening with a chance to avoid overtime. Forward Emaly Vatne received a pass entering the 18-yard box after great ball movement from the Buckeyes. Vatne crossed the ball to a wide-open Kailyn Dudukovich, who had been threatening all game. The forward got her head on Vatne’s perfect pass and directed it to the left of goalkeeper Madeline Smith and into the back of the net. With just under two minutes to play, Dudukovich put the Buckeyes in front by one.
Ohio State would not look back, as Dudukovich’s last-minute goal was the game-winner. It was a deflating 2-1 loss for the Terps in the Big Ten opener.
“They got a lot of fight,” Maryland head coach Ray Leone said. “I think all you need to know about this is when we go down 2-1 with a minute and a half to go and they get a corner kick, and give it a go right there, it’s amazing.”
On a beautiful Sunday at Ludwig Field, the Terps honored six of their players in a pregame ceremony for Senior Day.
It was a fast-paced start to this one, but it was Ohio State that earned the first four shots of the game. The Buckeyes used their speed and athleticism to keep the ball deep on Maryland’s side of the field and almost struck first, but Dudukovich’s open blast in the 10th minute went just wide.
Defender Zora Jackson responded with the first shot for the Terps in the 14th minute, which went wide left.
The game stopped in the 15th minute for a few moments as Ohio State head coach Lori Walker-Hock was seemingly complaining about the Maryland band, which was located on the side of the field where the Buckeyes were playing defense. In an odd and unique situation, both teams returned to their benches as the band left Ludwig Field before play resumed.
Ohio State displayed its athleticism and speed throughout the first half, forcing goalkeeper Liz Brucia to charge out of the net before it could generate a shot on multiple occasions.
The Buckeyes continued to test Brucia, earning multiple dangerous chances in the 29th minute. Forward Kayla Fischer had a booming shot from close range that was saved by the diving Brucia. Dudukovich had another great chance of the rebound, but her shot was blocked, leading to the first corner kick of the game. Brucia punched away the corner, ending the threatening flurry by the Buckeyes.
Speeding down the left side of the field, forward Mikayla Dayes made a crafty play to knock the ball of an Ohio State defender and earn the Terps’ first corner kick of the game in the 40th minute. Midfielder Hope Lewandowski’s service was a liner towards the low left post, but the Buckeyes were able to effectively clear the ball.
Almost immediately, the Buckeyes were able to squash the Terps momentum and take the lead.
In the 42nd minute, forward Kayla Fischer was speeding down the left side of the field with possession. Fischer was inching towards the six-yard box as she passed the ball through the middle looking for an open teammate. The ball went past a diving Brucia and pinged out to wide-open midfielder Christian Baumbick. From just a few yards outside the six-yard box, Baumbick rifled the ball into the bottom left corner of the net past a helpless Brucia. Baumbick’s first collegiate goal put the Buckeyes in front by one.
The first half wrapped up with the Buckeyes leading 1-0, and it could have been much worse for the Terps. Ohio State put on a clinic in the first half, outshooting Maryland 10-2.
Despite her strong first half, Leone substituted goalkeeper Madeline Smith in for Brucia to begin the second half, a move seen in the last two games, as well.
“They were phenomenal, oh my goodness,” Leone said on the two goalkeepers. “What a performance from the two of them. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a better performance from a tandem than I saw today.”
The Buckeyes began the second half where they left off, as forward Chloe Deyser had an opportunity in the 52nd minute. Her shot was blocked off the goal line as she faded away from the net, but it was already Ohio State’s third shot of the half.
Despite the Buckeyes continuing to control the game, the Terps found life with a perfect response.
Forward Keyera Wynn lofted a beautiful pass deep in the right side of Ohio State’s defensive third. Forward Mikayla Dayes fielded the ball just outside the 18-yard box and took one dribble to her right. Dayes crossed the ball to an in-stride Kori Locksley, who was just a few feet in front of Ohio State goalkeeper Bailey Kolinski. Dayes’ pass was perfect, hitting the right foot of Locksley and right past Kolinski. Locksley’s one-timer evened the score in a perfectly orchestrated response to the Buckeyes’ command.
The Terps used Locksley’s goal as a spark, as they nearly scored again in the 72nd minute. This time, Mikayla Dayes beat the entire Ohio State defense down the field. She had a small window to fire off a shot, and did, though it went wide right of the net.
Ohio State stopped the bleeding with a corner kick in the 76th minute, but defender/midfielder Talani Barnett’s shot was off target.
With the game squeaking towards overtime, forward Anna Carazza was handed a yellow card in the 85th minute, the first card of the game.
Fischer’s goal in the 89th minute was the difference in Sunday’s match. The Terps earned a corner kick in the last minute of the game but were unable to generate any shots.
“We’re fighters, and we can really do well this year in the Big Ten,” Mikayla Dayes said.
Though the Terps had strong spurts in the second half, Ohio State earned a well-deserved win, outshooting Maryland 19-7.
Three things to know
1. Ohio State dominated the first half. The Buckeyes set the tone early in this game, displaying a dynamic brand of soccer that the Terps had yet to see this season. Five of the Buckeyes’ 10 first half shots were on goal, forcing Brucia to be active in net. The graduate student goalie was great, making four saves in addition to crucial plays to stop the Buckeyes’ point of attack before they were able to get shots off. Maryland had opportunities in the attacking third, but it was unable to register quality shots in the first half.
2. Kori Locksley’s goal sparked the Terps. Ohio State was in control of this game. Its compact defense prevented Maryland from registering any sort of quality shots before Locksley’s goal. The Buckeyes were outplaying the Terps in the first 60 minutes, keeping the ball deep in Maryland territory. Though it will not show up in the stat sheet, Wynn deserves a ton of credit for her pass to get the play started. The Terps were able to beat the Buckeyes on the outside for the goal in a textbook play to get past a pesky Buckeyes defense.
“Honestly, I was just looking to attack,” Mikayla Dayes said. “I knew Kori was going to be there, so it ended up working out in our favor.”
3. This was a heartbreaker for Maryland. Dayes’ goal was huge for the Terps, potentially elevating them to a result against a great opponent in their first Big Ten game. However, Ohio State had other plans, as Dudukovich’s goal gave the Buckeyes a gritty road win to start conference play. Despite the loss, the Terps showed their fight in coming back from adversity, as they have done all season.
“They’ve got a lot of fight,” Leone said. “I’m heartbroken for our team, you know, because they really put it all out there, I know you can tell that.”