Feb. 10, 2010
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Leading up to No. 2 Maryland's opener Sunday against Richmond, Umterps.com will preview the Terps' highly-anticipated 2010 season. Today's preview will take a look at the Terps decorated midfield unit.
The Maryland midfield was one of the finest in the nation a year ago and the Terps return three All-Americans in that position alone for the 2010 campaign.
"The midfield is a very strong area for us," head coach Cathy Reese said. "We want to be fast out of our defensive, find our openings and score."
At the forefront of Maryland's dominant midfield group is 2009 ACC Player of the Year and IWLCA National Midfielder of the Year Caitlyn McFadden. McFadden's trophy case continued to add hardware as the Phoenix, Md. product capped the year by helping guide the U.S. to a gold medal in the FIL World Cup in Prague last summer.
"Caitlyn is a great leader by example," Reese said. "She is at the top of her game right now coming off a World Cup championship this summer. She is great on both ends of the field which makes her an outstanding midfielder."
Laura Merrifield is another Maryland midfielder who competed with the world's best this summer in Prague as she suited up for her native England. The junior gives Maryland a towering presence in the midfield with her 6-foot-1 frame, but equally impressive is her ability to run.
"Laura's speed sets her apart from anybody in the country," Reese said. "She is such a great teammate and an explosive player that is good at both ends of the field. She is key to our transition game."
Brandi Jones took her game to a new level in 2009, being tabbed an All-American and All-ACC after racking up 28 goals and 32 assists as a sophomore for the ACC champion Terrapins.
"Brandi is a great athlete, a force at both ends of the field, and a huge asset in our transition," Reese said. "She has phenomenal stick-work and good field sense and a great finisher."
Maryland welcomes one of the nation's premier freshmen with the arrival of Katie Schwarzmann. Schwarzmann was an incredible three-sport athlete and a three-time All-American in lacrosse at Century High School in Maryland.
"Katie's a freshman that we anticipate to be a huge impact player for us immediately this year," Reese said. "She has outstanding speed, great stick-work and is an excellent athlete overall."
Joining her in the midfield is fellow freshmen Danielle Kirk, who brings a great playing resume to College Park.
"Danielle is athletic, tough, and competitive. She hustles to groundballs. She's a confident player and scrappy throughout the midfield."