No. 2 Maryland field hockey is back in College Park for a Friday night Big Ten matchup with the Indiana Hoosiers. The game starts at 6 p.m. and can be streamed on Big Ten Plus.
The Terps (11-1) return home after picking up two road victories over then-No. 3 Iowa and then-No. 2 Northwestern. Maryland won both games in overtime by graduate midfielder Danielle Van Rootselaar. The Brown transfer scored all of Maryland’s goals in its 4-2 margin in the two ranked victories.
Indiana (8-5) is coming off a deflating 4-0 loss to top-10 Penn State at Deborah Tobias Field in Bloomington, Indiana on Oct. 2. The Hoosiers lost the shots battle, 15-8, but gained the 7-6 edge in penalty corners. Before their previous loss, they strung together a pair of victories over Miami (Ohio) and then-No. 21 Rutgers.
Maryland will seek to pick up its sixth conference victory of the season, while Indiana will look to pull off the upset as games start to increase in importance.
The Terps have a 10-0 all-time series lead over Indiana.
Now, let’s look at the Indiana Hoosiers.
Indiana Hoosiers (8-5)
2021 record: 10-10 (2-6 Big Ten)
The Indiana Hoosiers are led by head coach Kayla Bashore, who’s entering her fourth season on campus in Bloomington, Indiana.
Bashore led the Hoosiers to great success last season, as their 10 wins were the most since the 2012 season, when they went 11-10. Indiana pitched a program-record seven shutouts along with two road victories over top-25 opponents.
The Indiana graduate was a decorated player at her alma mater. Bashore was a two-time NFHCA All-American, three-time First Team All-Big Ten Honoree and the 2005 Big Ten Player of the Year.
She is one of the best players in program history and ranks among the top in nearly every statistical category. All-time, she’s sixth in goals, seventh in points and second in shots.
Indiana has a former player leading the way that has the pedigree to lead the program back to its glory days. With Bashore’s leadership, Indiana could be a team to watch during the second half of the season.
Players to know
Jemima Cookson, junior forward, No. 1 — Cookson comes to College Park with 13 points and is Indiana’s leader in goals with six this season. The versatile forward scored a pair of goals in Indiana’s narrow 3-2 defeat of California on Sept. 4. She took it up a notch on Sept. 11, scoring three goals against Bellarmine. Cookson recorded the opening goal last year in Indiana’s 8-2 loss to the Terps. No. 1 is proficient using her speed and explosiveness to get to favorable spots for shot attempts.
Anna Mozeleski, freshman midfielder, No. 10 — The five-foot-three freshman has appeared in 13 games this season, recording three goals and two assists. She scored the opening goal in Indiana’s 2-0 victory over UC-Davis. Moszeleski has shown promise with her ability to attack angles and contribute to an offensive attack that has the seventh-most goals per game in the Big Ten. The Kingston, Pennsylvania, native scored the first goal in Indiana’s dominant 5-0 defeat of Ball State.
Sydney Keld, redshirt junior back, No. 4 — Keld currently leads the Big Ten in defensive saves with nine. She is a key cog on a fiesty Indiana defense that looks to stifle an explosive Maryland offense. The five-foot-10 Delaware native also ranks second on the team with four goals this season. Keld scored two goals in the Hoosiers’ 2-0 victory over Longwood on Sept. 18. She will look to contribute on both ends of the field to pull off the large upset on the road.
Saves. The offense has not been Indiana’s strong suit, but its defense has been keeping it alive in the heat of the Big Ten. The Hoosiers are fifth in the Big Ten with 59 total saves and have been effective in their victories this season. In their two-game winning streak over Miami (Ohio) and Rutgers, the Hoosiers recorded eight saves to bring their home record to 5-3. Indiana is a solid defensive team, with multiple athletes capable of pressuring opposing offenses.
Shots. The Big Ten has seven teams featured in this week’s NFHCA top 25 rankings. Those teams are among the best offensive teams in the conference, as they are effective in getting a healthy number of shots at the cage. Indiana is last in the Big Ten with 118 shots. The Hoosiers do not have a player on their roster that has registered at least 15 shots this season, which shows their inability to score. The calendar has shifted to October, which means Big Ten field hockey is ramping up. Indiana has to address this issue if it wants to make a deep run in the Big Ten tournament.
Three things to watch
1. What’s next for Van Rootselaar after an eventful weekend? The Terps were on the road in hostile territory last weekend with two dates with Big Ten powers: Northwestern and Iowa. Van Rootselaar started the weekend on a good note with a game-winning goal in overtime to defeat Iowa 2-1 on Sept. 30.
The Brown transfer followed up her memorable performance in good fashion when the Terps traveled to Illinois for a date with Northwestern on Oct. 2. Van Rootselaar put Maryland over the top, again, as her second consecutive goal in the extra period kept the Terps’ conference record at 5-0. With Maryland’s leading scorer Hope Rose missing the past two games, its offense has found ways to win, and Van Rootselaar was a big part of the equation.
2. Can the Terps extend their lead in the Big Ten? Maryland sits in first place in the Big Ten with an 11-1 overall record and a perfect 5-0 clip in conference play. With a victory over Indiana, the Terps would hold a two-game lead over Penn State; a date with the Nittany Lions on Oct. 21 looms. The Terps shook off their 4-3 double-overtime loss to Princeton with a four-game winning streak that featured opportunistic defense and efficient offensive production. The Big Ten Tournament is rapidly approaching, and the Terps can cement themselves as the conference’s top seed.
3. How will Maryland start its three-game homestand? After a successful two-game trip on the road, Maryland will play its next three games at the Field Hockey and Lacrosse Complex in College Park. With six games remaining in the regular season, securing late-season victories in the Big Ten is vital for seeding in the conference tournament later this month. Georgetown makes its way to College Park on Oct. 11, before Rutgers comes to town on Oct. 16. The Terps have already established themselves as national title contenders this season, but securing three wins at home bodes well for their chances of winning the Big Ten regular-season title.