PHILADELPHIA – No. 2 Maryland field hockey won at Temple, 5-1, Sunday in the Conference Cup championship match in Philadelphia. Five scored as the Terrapins’ defensive unit stepped up to hold the Owls to just three shots and two penalty corners.
The Terrapins (2-0) outshot the Owls (1-1), 32-3, and had 10 penalty corners to their two.
“We are really impressed with the adjustments the team made from Saturday to Sunday,” head coach Missy Meharg said. “The emphasis today was to have two people playing against one in defense and we did. We are very, very impressed with Sarah Sprink and Ali McEvoy in that defense. Kasey Tapman out of the right back spot had a tremendous game in terms of intercepting and counterattacking.”
“Our front four or five players are very exciting and to get five goals against a speedy, fit Temple team is most impressive. The girls watched them play yesterday. They knew they could match our speed and we needed to be technical and fast. We definitely grew over the weekend.
Senior Preseason All-ACC selection Ali McEvoy opened the scoring just over eight minutes in. She slung in junior Katie Gerzabek’s rebounded shot from the left side off a penalty corner to put the Terps on the board.
Late in the first half, the Terrapins earned three straight penalty corners, with Temple’s goalie Lizzy Millen notched saves on all three. After the last corner, the Owls took it the length of the field and Lauren Hunt tucked it in the cage to tie the game with 1:26 left in the half.
Maryland answered right back, drawing a corner with 10 seconds to play. Sophomore Alyssa Parker tipped in fellow sophomore Sarah Sprink’s rebounded shot off the play to give the Terps the lead back before the half.
The two teams battled through the first 14 minutes of the second half. Parker sent a long pass from the left side in to sophomore Anna Dessoye, who redirected it in for a 3-1 Maryland lead in the 49th minute.
Junior Maxine Fluharty extended the Terps’ lead in the 54th minute. She took a pass from junior Steffi Schneid, turned right and zipped in a hard shot from near the top of the circle for a 4-1 advantage.
With eight minutes to play, Sprink scored off a penalty corner set up by senior Jill Witmer and Dessoye to make it 5-1.
Next, Maryland will play at No. 8 Old Dominion Friday at 5 p.m. The Terps will host No. 17 Drexel Sunday at 2 p.m. in their home opener at the Field Hockey & Lacrosse Complex. Admission and parking are both free for Sunday’s matchup.