With just four minutes remaining in overtime, No. 3- seeded Virginia field hockey drew a penalty corner against Maryland. Off the initial shot, Terp goalkeeper Noelle Frost continued her dominance in goal and blocked the shot.
But off the rebound, Cavalier midfielder Rachel Robinson corralled the ball and crossed it into the circle. Sophomore midfielder Annie McDonough stuck her stick out and deflected the ball into the back corner of the cage past Frost.
After nearly 70 minutes of scoreless field hockey, the Cavaliers finally wore down the Terrapin defense. The overtime goal propelled Virginia to a 1-0 victory and sends the team to the NCAA Final Four.
With its season on the line in the fourth quarter, Maryland was put under a lot of pressure by Virginia. In the final quarter alone, the Cavaliers drew four penalty corners and kept pouring on shots.
The Maryland defense anchored by senior keeper Noelle Frost was able to shut down the Virginia offense and keep things tied, 0-0, however. The Cavaliers drew four corners in a span of two minutes, but Frost continuously made diving stops en route to a career-high save day with 11.
But the Terps could only hang on for so long.
In the opening minute of the fourth quarter, the Cavaliers rebounded a shot off a deflection from Frost for an open goal. After the Cavaliers celebrated after scoring what seemed to be the go-ahead goal, the goal was later called off after a review.
After seeing the Terps fail to convert on a number of corners, the Cavaliers drew their first corner attempt in the 35th minute. But Frost picked up where she left off in the opening game of the tourney and made a couple of crucial diving saves to keep things scoreless, coming up clutch as she had throughout the match. ‘
But in the first half, the Terps were in control offensively after putting pressure on the Virginia Cavaliers early and often. Maryland’s offense continued to charge into Virginia territory and had a number of scoring opportunities.
Despite having the ball in Cavaliers’ territory for the majority of the first half, the Terps still couldn’t manage to get the ball in the back of the cage. Maryland drew four penalty corners in the half, but couldn’t capitalize.
In just the fifth minute of the game, Maryland tried to go back to that strategy after working so well in the previous game. The Terps set up defender Bodil Keus for the shot as they usually do, but the junior captain missed the cage wide left.
Just a few minutes later in the 12th, Keus sent a rocket at the cage, but Cavaliers keeper Lauren Hausheer dove to her right and swallowed up the shot.
Virginia had limited scoring chances, but still registered two shots on goal in the first half — the same amount as the Terps. The Cavaliers were effective with their limited offensive pushes, but Maryland senior keeper Noelle Frost was able to shutdown any scoring chances.
In the second half, the steady pressure from Maryland continued. However, it was constantly the same result as the Terps weren’t able to get it into the circle and the Cavaliers back line of defense stood tall.
After a season full of great second half performances by Maryland, they couldn’t adjust in its last game of the season. While the Cavaliers were able to adjust and put the pressure on Maryland, it turned out to be the difference for a 1-0 victory.
Three things to know
1. It was another scoreless first half for the Terps. For the fourth straight game, Maryland wasn’t able to find the back of the net in the first 30 minutes. While the offense appeared to be in rhythm against Virginia, it still couldn’t get it past Cavalier goalkeeper Lauren Hausheer in the first half. The last time the Terps scored in the first half came against Michigan State on Oct. 25.
2. Both of the goalies kept their teams in the game. Both Frost and Hausheer put on a great display of their shot-blocking abilities all game long. The Cavaliers backline of defense was very strong and shutdown a lot of Maryland opportunities, including a couple of diving saves by Hausheer. For Maryland, Frost put on an absolute clinic in the cage. The senior keeper was a wall in goal for the Terps and recorded a career-high 11 saves.
3. The Terps were unable to pull out the win in Charlottesville once again. In 2018, the Terps traveled to Charlottesville for their last game of the regular season and fell to the Cavaliers 3-1. This season, Virginia was 9-2 defending its home turf and the success continued for the Cavaliers in today’s matchup.