Terps Fall To UNC 3-2 In Finals

Nov. 22, 2009

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. - The top-seeded Maryland field hockey team fell 3-2 to No. 3 North Carolina in the NCAA national field hockey championship Sunday afternoon. After the Terps led or kept the score even all game, the Tar Heels scored the game-winning goal on a penalty corner with less than a minute to play.

"We're disappointed, certainly, in not winning the national championship," head coach Missy Meharg said. "We want to give a lot of credit to a very disciplined Carolina team. They're very opportunistic and they came out with a vengeance in the second half. Right now it's about appreciating our competition, recognizing their championship and being together."

Both teams were held scoreless throughout the first half, though the Terps seemed in control of the tempo and speed of the game. They led the Tar Heels in shots 8-1, with senior goalkeeper Alicia Grater notching a save on that one shot.

Senior Nicole Muracco scored seven minutes into the second half on a breakaway that brought Kintzer out of the cage. That goal put the Terps on the board to open the score.

With 11:46 left in the game, senior Alexis Pappas received a yellow card and was forced to sit out for five minutes. Two and a half minutes after she received the card, North Carolina's Danielle Forward tied the game up.

Less than a minute and a half later, freshman Megan Frazer fired a deflected shot into the cage to give the Terps the lead once again. She found the loose ball on the play and hit the shot in.

Immediately after Frazer's score, North Carolina called a timeout and pulled Kintzer out of the goal to have an extra player in the field. Three minutes later, North Carolina's Illse Davids fired a shot from Katelyn Falgowski to tie the score up once more at 2-2.

With near one minute left to play, The Tar Heels were awarded a penalty corner. As the clock ran down, Forword fired the game-winning goal with exactly 11 seconds remaining in the game.

Brianna Davies, Muracco, and junior Katie O'Donnell were all named to the 2009 NCAA Tournament team.

Grater finished with six saves, five of which came in the second half, and also notched her 100th save this year in the game. Kintzer finished with five, all coming in the first half. The Tar Heels held the penalty corner advantage over the Terrapins 7-5, while the Terps outshot the Tar Heels 11-10.

The Terps fell to 2-2 against North Carolina in the national championship game. The 2009 season is still the winningest in program history, as they have never finished with 23 wins. Over the course of the season, five school records were broken, an ACC and an NCAA tournament record were broken and another NCAA Tournament record was tied.

This year's senior class of Grater, Davies, Pappas, Muracco, Ameliet Rischen, Kristina Foster, and Emma Thomas was the most successful in program history. Amassing two NCAA titles and two ACC titles, they won numerous individual awards, earned an overall record of 85-8 with a winning percentage of .914.

-Go Terps-