COLLEGE PARK, Md. – No. 2 Maryland field hockey cruised past No. 17 Drexel, 8-3, Sunday in its home opener at the Field Hockey & Lacrosse Complex. Six Terrapins (4-0) scored in the match and 21 saw action as the Terps handled the Dragons (2-2).
“It’s exciting to play such a brand of hockey, especially in the front third of the field,” head coach Missy Meharg said. “Many of our goals came off how we counter defended in the front third with our discipline and our energy. We had some rough fouls Friday night (at ODU). I thought we were a little bit out of control, so our emphasis today was counter defending with a lot of team balance and counter attacking off of that.”
Less than two minutes later, junior Katie Gerzabek brought the ball all the way in from the right side and scored herself for a 2-0 lead. Just over three minutes after she scored, Witmer made it 3-0 with a behind the back shot off a rebound.
Drexel called timeout after it went down by three, then turned up the pressure. Three minutes after the timeout, the Dragons were awarded a penalty corner and Lindsay McArdle scored to get them on the board. Three minutes after that, Christina Conrad cut the Terps’ lead to one with a shot from just five yards out.
Freshman Mieke Hayn pushed Maryland’s lead back to three 30 seconds before halftime when she was able to get it behind Drexel’s goalie off a rebound. The Terrapins led 5-2 at the break.
Sprink extended Maryland’s lead to four three minutes into the second period when she scored off another corner, this time set up by Hayn and sophomore Anna Dessoye.
Redshirt junior Shelby Sydnor scored her first goal of the season in the 53rd minute when Gerzabek fed her the ball on the left post. Junior Welma Luus scored her first career goal as a Terrapin in the 55th minute for the Terps’ final goal. Drexel added its final goal with just under two minutes to play when Meghan Plank put it in the cage.
Maryland outshot Drexel, 31-9, and had six penalty corners to the Dragons’ two.
The Terrapins will host their annual Golf Tournament Friday at the University of Maryland Golf Course. For more on the event, log on to http://www.umterps.com/fls/29700/pdf/fh/GolfBrochure2013.pdf?DB_OEM_ID=29700.
Maryland will host the annual Terrapin Invitational next weekend with Miami (Ohio), American and Columbia all coming to College Park. The Terps will play Columbia at 11 a.m. Saturday and Miami (Ohio) and American will play at approximately 1 p.m. On Sunday, Columbia and American will meet at noon, with the Terrapins taking on Miami (Ohio) at 2 p.m. Admission and parking are free for the weekend.
Live stats will be available for all four games of the Terrapin Classic. Maryland’s game vs. Columbia Saturday will be broadcast live online for a fee on TerpsTV Premium.
NOTE: Senior Jill Witmer and former Terrapin Katie O’Donnell were named to the U.S. Senior National Team’s roster for the Pan American Games in Mendoza, Argentina Sept. 21-28. The Pan Am Cup Winners will receive automatic qualification to the 2014 World Cup to be hosted in The Hague, Netherlands.
The U.S. has been placed in Pool B, along with Chile, Mexico and Uruguay. Team USA opens their qualifying quest against Mexico on September 21, 2:30pm ET. Next up, the team faces Chile on September 22, 2:30pm ET and then Uruguay on September 24, 5pm ET. The semi-finals are scheduled for September 26 and the finals on September 28.