Maryland women’s soccer couldn’t get on themselves on the board offensively on Thursday night, losing to Illinois 1-0 at Ludwig Field.
The Illini had the edge in shots, leading the Terps 12-10 (3-1 shots on goal). Illinois’ lone goal came on a penalty kick in the 56th minute.
The Maryland attack was able to build off their strong build up play from Sunday’s match into Thursday, finding their way through Illinois’ defense fairly quickly. Forward Alyssa Poarch earned Maryland their first shot on goal of the match just seven minutes in.
7' | Great shot by Alyssa Poarch forces a spectacular save! pic.twitter.com/in3WqE1HZ8— Maryland W. Soccer (@TerpsWSoccer) October 4, 2018
Although it didn’t result in a goal, it was a strong attempt and a great start for the Terp offense.
Illinois slowly began to find its own chances as the half went on, threatening to score on several occasions and forcing goalkeeper Rachel Egyed to work. In the 20th minute, Egyed was faced with a shot from within 10 feet of the goal, but kept her composure and looked the ball right into her arms for the save.
Both teams kept up the pressure on each other through the rest of the first half, but neither were able to convert on scoring opportunities as they went to halftime tied 0-0.
The Terps started the second half even more aggressively than they did the first, getting the ball into the Illinois zone and really making it difficult for the to clear the ball once there was a change in possession.
The first goal of the game came in the 56th minute when Illinois earned and converted a penalty kick. Midfielder Anissa Mose was defending an Illinois forward who possessed the ball in the box, but when Mose was too aggressive on an attempted tackle, the referee pointed to the spot and award the PK. Illinois midfielder Hope Breslin stepped up to the spot, and buried the kick to make the score 1-0.
After a 40-minute rain delay, play resumed and the Terps began their effort to try and find an equalizer. That opportunity came in the 77th minute on a free kick from Alyssa Poarch from just outside the box, but her shot was blocked and deflected out of play to end the threat.
Maryland hosts Northwestern on Sunday at 2 p.m. ET.
Three things to know
- Maryland was in it the whole way. Aside from the penalty kick Illinois drew, it really appeared that Maryland was evenly matched. One misstep in the wrong part of the field proved to be the difference.
- Another strong game for Maryland offensively. Although the Terps were held scoreless, Maryland was again able to rack up double digit shots in consecutive games. Like it’s been most of this season, the shots are they for the Terps; they just need to finish them.
- Alyssa Poarch has potential as a scorer. Poarch was the go-to offensive option Thursday night for Maryland, leading the team in shots with three, including her one impressive attempt on goal in the seventh minute. Poarch is still just a freshman, but her willingness and ability to get the ball on goal is encouraging for her future at Maryland.