Nov. 12, 2010
CARY, N.C. - Senior Jason Herrick scored two goals to help Maryland avenge a pair of 2009 postseason losses and blank Virginia, 2-0, Friday to advance to the 2010 Atlantic Coast Conference Men's Soccer Championship title game.
Herrick, a Lowe's Senior CLASS finalist and All-ACC First Team pick, tallied one goal in each half to lift second-seeded Maryland to the title game Sunday after falling to Virginia in both the ACC and NCAA Tournaments last season.
After controlling possession for the majority of the first half, Herrick finally found the back of the net to put Maryland on top at 36:34. Casey Townsend's strike was blocked out by the Virginia backline and Herrick recovered the rebound and blasted a four-yard shot past Cavalier keeper Diego Restrepo for the lead.
Maryland's Zac MacMath showed exactly why he was tabbed the league's top goalkeeper for the second straight season when he preserved the shutout with a penalty kick save in the 44th minute. Ari Dimas's groundball attempt was thwarted off by MacMath to his right to keep the score at 1-0 heading into halftime.
An evenly-played second half broke open when Herrick tacked on his second goal of the match at 71:06. A foul by Dimas set up a Maryland free kick 25 yards out. Taylor Kemp quickly served the bonus opportunity to Herrick who crashed the middle with a five-yard blast for a 2-0 score.
MacMath, who made four saves on the night, secured his 12th shutout of the year and tied his previous program-best mark for shutouts in a season that he set in the 2008 campaign. The Terps have won 12 consecutive matches heading into Sunday's title bout.
"It feels great to move on and play on Sunday," head coach Sasho Cirovski said. "I thought this was a highly-competitive match indicative of the rivalry we have with Virginia. I think in games like these you need your players make plays. I thought today we had some of our key players make key plays. They got us last year and we are fortunate to be on the positive side this year so far."
Maryland and Cirovski seek their fourth ACC Tournament crown Sunday at 1 p.m. at WakeMed Soccer Park. It will be the first time the Terps tangle with someone other than Virginia in the championship contest. Maryland battles the winner of No. 1 seed North Carolina and fourth-seeded Boston College live on Fox Sports Net.