With the game even at one apiece in overtime, No. 4 Maryland field hockey and No. 3 Iowa frantically paced the field searching for the game-winning goal.
With fewer than seven minutes in the extra period, the Terps were assessed their seventh penalty corner of the game. Maryland made number seven the final straw.
Maryland graduate midfielder Danielle van Rootselaar scored her second goal of the day on the play, giving the Terps a 2-1 victory in Iowa City, Iowa, on Friday evening in a clash of top of the best teams in the nation.
The top-10 showdown started off with both teams trading possessions quickly within the first five minutes of action, as they searched for early scoring opportunities.
Maryland and Iowa passed the ball around the perimeter of the defense, looking to find someone in the middle for an outlet pass, but were unsuccessful in their efforts.
Maryland star sophomore Hope Rose did not play in the contest, and she was seen with a boot on her left foot. The Terps faced an uphill battle without their leading goal scorer this season.
The second quarter began with both teams failing to score on two scoring opportunities. With fewer than 10 minutes in the second quarter, Maryland was assessed a penalty corner, as it looked to get on the board first.
Midfielder Leah Crouse fired a wide shot that was almost immediately intercepted by Iowa.
The Hawkeyes jolted out in transition within seconds and attacked the Maryland defense aggressively, earning a penalty corner of their own.
Iowa midfielder Anthe Nijziel fired a shot that veered to the left, leaving the Hawkeyes without a goal heading late in the second quarter.
The two Big Ten juggernauts played strong defense and had timely defensive rotations to keep each other out of the cage.
Defense reigned supreme in the first half, as both teams combined for four shots and five penalty corners after the first 30 minutes.
The second half started similarly to the beginning of the game, as both teams struggled to strike iron first.
With fewer than seven minutes in the third quarter, Iowa capitalized on an uncharacteristic Maryland turnover.
Maryland’s Riley Donnelly passed the ball back to Maura Verleg, who was standing directly in front of the net.
Verleg attempted to pass the ball, but Iowa junior forward Alex Wesneski intercepted it and sent a shot into the right side of the cage. Wesneski’s goal gave Iowa a 1-0 lead.
The Terps wouldn’t wait to respond.
With less than a minute remaining in the third quarter, Maryland received its sixth penalty corner of the game. This time, the Terps cashed in on their opportunity.
Rootselaar sent a missile into the left side of the cage for the equalizer. Van Rootselaar’s goal evened the game at one apiece heading into the final quarter of play.
The final period was quiet as the game headed to overtime. Van Rootselaar’s game winning goal in extra time was the difference.
The Terps made a major statement Friday, and another high-profile road matchup against No. 2 Northwestern awaits Sunday.
Three things to know
1. Both teams played sound defense in the first half, before their offenses came alive in the second half. Coming into the game, many regarded these two teams as two of the premier defensive teams in the country. In the first half, both teams’ defensive prowess lived up to the hype. At the half, both teams failed to register a goal, while only registering a combined four shots and five penalty corners. The second half would be a different story, as both offenses began to find success on penalty corners. Iowa and Maryland would combine for three goals over the final three periods, on excellent execution both programs.
2. Maryland’s offensive depth performed well, despite not having one of its key players. Maryland star sophomore Hope Rose ranks second in the Big Ten with 10 goals on the season. Rose’s aggressiveness is a key piece to an explosive Maryland offense. However, the sophomore did not play in the contest, as the Big Ten Plus telecast reported that she was seen with a boot on her left foot.
Maryland graduate midfielder Danielle van Rootselaar scored two goals in the contest, which marked the second time this season she has accomplished that feat in one game. She scored a pair of goals in the Terps 4-2 victory over then No. 23 Ohio State. After only recording two shots in the first half, Maryland’s offense exploded for nine shots over the final three periods to secure their fourth conference victory of the season.
3. A statement statement win for Maryland. Not that there was any doubt before, but the Terps stamped their mark as one of the nation’s best on Friday. Iowa and Northwestern could be the Terps’ toughest opponents all season long, and it is an arduous task to get them back-to-back on a road trip. Regardless, Maryland passed test one with authority, beating the Hawkeyes to put itself in a good position to win the conference. If the Terps can defeat the Wildcats, their claim as the Big Ten’s best will go undisputed.