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No. 9 Maryland field hockey vs. No. 7 Boston College preview

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The Terps look to improve to 2-0 on the season.

UMTerps

No. 9 Maryland field hockey will be on the road this weekend at Duke University to play in the sixth annual Big Ten/ACC Cup.

The Terps are coming off an exhilarating double-overtime victory at home versus Saint Joseph’s.

Star forward Bibi Donraadt scored an outstanding game-winning goal 51 seconds into the second overtime just minutes after making a save to give the Terrapins the 4-3 victory over the No. 20 ranked Hawks of Saint Joseph’s.

Maryland will be joined by their Big Ten counterparts, the No. 4 Northwestern Wildcats as well as No. 7 Boston College and No. 12 Duke University of the Atlantic Coast Conference.

The Boston College Eagles (2-0) are coming off a nail-biting overtime victory over Maine.

Maryland head coach Missy Meharg is looking to lead her group to a 2-0 early-season record while defeating its second consecutive ranked opponent.

Boston College and Maryland are familiar foes, as they faced each other annually until the Terps departed the ACC for the Big Ten in 2014. The Terrapins are looking for their fourth win over the Eagles in the Big Ten/ACC Cup. Excluding the Big Ten/ACC Cup, the Terps have dominated the Eagles with an impeccable 9-0 record.

This early-season matchup between two top 10 teams should provide tons of excitement and intrigue for fans and of course, the players. The game will start at 3 p.m. on Friday and will air on the ACC Network.

Now let’s look at the No. 7 Boston College Eagles.

Boston College Eagles

2020 record: 9-5 (3-2 ACC)

Head coach Kelly Doton is returning for her ninth season as the head coach of the Boston College Eagles. Doton has the best winning percentage in program history and has guided the Eagles to a plethora of success.

Since Doton arrived in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, she has established a winning culture and laid the foundation for continued success within the program.

In 2019, she guided the Eagles to a 15-win season and an appearance in the ACC Championship. During that season, the Eagles would advance to the Final Four, where they will ultimately lose to the national champion North Carolina Tar Heels.

Doton has led Boston College to three NCAA tournament appearances, as the helm of the program. She has led Boston College to five seasons, in which her program recorded double-digit victories.

Doton has enjoyed instant success in Boston College and currently has the third-highest win total by a head coach in Boston College field hockey history.

Players to know

Milagros Arteta, junior midfielder, No. 6 – The junior from Argentina has made her presence felt during her first season with Boston College. Arteta currently leads the Eagles in goals scored, registering two thus far within the 2021 season. Arteta has a unique ability to put massive pressure on goalies with her attacking style and relentless spirit. Arteta must be accounted for, as she can catch passes from far distances. In the Eagles season-opening 3-0 shutout victory, Arteta fired a shot after a 45-yard entry pass from her teammate Fusine Govaert.

Sarah Johnson, graduate defender, No. 3 — Johnson comes to Boston College, after a decorated career at Stanford University. She is a three-time America East Champion and was named the American East Championship Most Outstanding Player in 2019. In Boston College’s resounding season-opening victory versus Quinnipiac, Johnson did it all for her team. She recorded one goal, one assist, and one shot on goal. Her versatility is a major component of the No. 7 Boston College Eagles.

Elizabeth Warner, graduate forward, No. 12 — Warner returns for her fourth season with the Eagles and has been nothing short of sensational during her time on the field. Last season, Warner led the Eagles in goals, recording an impressive 8 goals in her junior campaign. Warner was also tied for first on the team in shots on goals and total points. And their recent victory over Maine, Warner registered two shots, two shots on goals, and one assist. It is no secret that Warner is more than capable of contributing to her team’s success in of abundance of ways.

Strength

Shots. Boston College is a team with an offensive attack that is amongst the best in our nation. This season, Boston College is outscoring their opponents in shots with a great disparity of 44 to 15. It is easy to see why the Eagles are ranked seventh in the nation, as they can attack opponents’ goalies with veracity and relentless. The Eagles have an aggressive mindset of firing multiple shots, with the attention of not being denied consistently. Doton’s team is consistently looking for ways to generate an electric offense, with players who can create scoring opportunities for others throughout the game.

Weakness

Shots on goal percentage. While Boston College is proficient at generating shots, it is not able to generate most of its shots into goals. The Eagles’ current shots on goal percentage come in at 47.7%, which is surprising given that they can generate an exorbitant number of shots per game. Boston College has shown a propensity to struggle to finish once they are in scoring position, hence why they are converting less than 50% of their shots into goals.

Three things to watch

1. Can Maryland limit Boston College’s ability to generate shots? Maryland star goalie Noelle Frost will be counted on to limit the Eagles’ ability to turn their shots into goals. The No. 7 Eagles are averaging three goals per game and the Terps will be looking to showcase a stingy defense to negate Boston College’s offensive attack.

2. Can the Terps defeat their second consecutive ranked opponent? The Terrapins will be looking to defeat the No. 7 Boston College Eagles after they recently defeated the No. 20 ranked Saint Joseph’s. A second consecutive victory over a top opponent would catapult the Terps up the rankings and provide a jolt of confidence for the remainder of the season. Missy Meharg’s group is supremely talented and will look to make a resounding statement in the Big Ten/ACC Cup.

3. How will the Terps respond? Maryland is coming off a victory, in which it took two overtimes to defeat Saint Joseph’s for their first victory of the season. Star forward Bibi Donraadt was determined to score the game-winning goal for her club immediately, as it took 51 seconds for her to score the game-winning goal that would ultimately give Maryland the victory. In front of a home crowd, the Terrapins squeezed out a quality victory that energized the players and their rabid fanbase. The Terps will be looking to take their show on the road and prove that they are a force to be reckoned with this season.

Editor’s note: The game time and network the matchup will air on have been updated.