The Maryland field hockey team outclassed Rutgers in a matchup of top-15 Big Ten teams, earning a 3-1 win in College Park on Friday afternoon.
The Terrapins used a strong first half to take a lead that the Scarlet Knights imply couldn’t overcome as time winded down. Freshman Bibi Donraadt led the way with a pair of goals, her seventh and eighth of the season.
Rutgers put pressure on Maryland to start the game, but the Terrapins would strike first. Five minutes and one second into the match, Maryland’s Kyler Greenwalt knocked in a rebound goal off the Terrapins’ first penalty corner of the game.
A pair of quick Maryland goals would then follow before the 15-minute mark to give the Terrapins a 3-0 lead. Donraadt knocked the first one in off a pass from Linnea Gonzales at the 13:34 mark. Then, just 43 seconds later, Donraadt found herself in front again, and was able to redirect the ball into the back of the goal.
Despite the slight pressure early from the Scarlet Knights, the stat sheet after 35 minutes was all Maryland. The Terrapins led Rutgers 8-0 in shots, with five shots on target, and had a 2-0 lead in penalty corners. The only stats for Rutgers in the first half were two saves and one yellow card.
Despite some pressure by Rutgers in the second half, Maryland pulled Sarah Holliday with 13:13 left and allowed Noelle Frost to get some Big Ten experience.
Just after this substitution, Rutgers found their way on to the scoring sheet for the first time. Nikki Profita assisted Tayla Parkes on a goal after Frost came out of the goal to try and make a play.
Rutgers pulled its keeper for an extra attacker with under four minutes left and generated a penalty corner, but nothing came from the attempt and Maryland was able to hold on for the 3-1 win.
Maryland still commanded the stat sheet in the second half despite Rutgers finding some offense. The Terrapins finished the game with 18 shots (10 on target), while Rutgers had five shots, three of which were on target.
The Terrapins will travel to State College, Pennsylvania, to face No. 7 Penn State on Sunday.
Three things to know
- Bibi Donraadt is showing her versatility. Head coach Missy Meharg added some reasoning to Donraadt’s success by noting her versatility on offense. “Bibi has a natural knack ... She probably has the most shot variety on the team,” Meharg said. If Donraadt can continue lighting up the score sheet like she did Friday, Maryland is all for her showing off her skills.
- First-half shutouts are becoming a staple. Just like it did against Connecticut, Maryland held Rutgers without a shot in the first 35 minutes. Meharg discussed how “choppy” this game was, but noted that this is how games usually go. She, along with many, hope that the Terrapins can find their flow in time for Sunday's game, so that we see more play similar to that of the first half.
- Sunday’s game should not be overlooked. After this game, Meharg was asked about how she and the team were feeling about the possibility of the undefeated season. She responded by labeling Penn State as a “potential national championship team” and stating that Maryland needs to keep thinking one game at a time.