Oct. 12, 2008
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The University of Maryland women's soccer team fought valiantly against No. 9 Duke Sunday afternoon at Ludwig Field, but the Blue Devils capitalized on a corner kick as the first half clock ticked down to escape College Park with a 1-0 victory.
"This is disappointing," said Maryland head coach Brian Pensky, "because in our past three ACC games we haven't given up a goal in the run of play. Unfortunately in that same timeframe, we've scored only one goal, which came off of a set-piece of our own.
"I felt that our kids battled and worked hard today. The reality is we're a very young team. For a good part of the game we had seven or eight freshmen and sophomores playing. As a group, we need to learn how to win a game like this. And that starts with being able to put a team on its heels, as well as having experienced leaders grabbing the team and our young kids growing up fast."
The first 44 minutes of the opening half was a back-and-forth struggle for both teams.
Duke had a chance to get on the board in the 36th minute when Carey Goodman snapped off a good header, but Terrapin goalkeeper Mary Casey was able to recover and tip the ball over the crossbar to keep the score 0-0.
Maryland had its best chance in the 41st minute when junior midfielder Megan Watson ripped a shot from 20 yards out on the left side. The ball was bending toward the near post and Blue Devil keeper Cassidy Powers tipped the ball to herself and secured the rebound to prevent the score.
But Duke would take a 1-0 lead into halftime thanks to a header by Ashley Rape in the 44th minute. Shelia Kramer sent a corner kick from the far right side to the far corner of the six-yard box where Rape carved out some space and finished into the left side of the Terrapin goal.
Maryland came out of the break strong, nearly getting the tying goal in the 47th minute. Junior defender Brittany Cummins sent a great cross from the far right corner to the middle of the Duke 18-yard box. Sophomore forward Annesia Faulker made a great run down the center of the field and got on the end of the cross with a leaping volley that barely caught the crossbar.
Senior Ashley Grove got on the end of it, but the ball sailed just wide.
Casey kept the Terps in the match with several brilliant saves, including stuffing Marybeth Kreger in the 74th minute. Kreger appeared to be wide open for an easy shot, but Casey came off of her line and didn't allow Kreger time to setup for a good strike.
The Terps kept the pressure on the Blue Devils trying to get the tying goal. They nearly pulled it off in the 84th minute. Grove played a great back-heel through-ball to sophomore midfielder Caitlin McDowell down the left side of the field. McDowell created some space and lifted a cross into the center of the 18-yard box where freshman forward Lydia Hastings got on the end of it, but Powers was able to make a diving save to preserve the 1-0 Duke lead.
Maryland (5-7-1, 1-4-0 ACC) concludes its four-match home stand on Thursday, October 16 against No. 8 Virginia. The match is slated for a 7 p.m. start at Ludwig Field.