No. 5 Terps Men's Soccer Wins Pivotal ACC Match at Virginia, 2-1
Oct. 31, 2008
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - The fifth-ranked Maryland men's soccer team edged Virginia, 2-1, in a game full of dramatics on Halloween night in ACC action at Klockner Stadium.
Virginia (9-6-0, 4-3-0 ACC) created an opportunity two minutes into play when Ross LaBauex's first shot resulted in an easy save for Maryland freshman keeper Zac MacMath. Maryland fired back in the 14th minute after a strike by sophomore forward Jason Herrick from just outside the box sailed directly into the arms of the Cavalier goalkeeper Michael Giallombardo.
Maryland (14-3-0, 5-2-0 ACC) got on the board first at 23:42 when Drew Yates challenged a Cavalier defender, won the battle, and dished to Jeremy Hall who then sent a low strike into the right corner that appeared to be saved by Giallombardo but trickled past the goal line for a 1-0 Maryland lead.
Virginia nearly tied it up in the 32nd minute when Jonathan Villanueva fired a rocket at the goal, but Omar Gonzalez made a sliding block to preserve the Maryland lead.
The Terps sustained a setback with approximately nine minutes remaining in the first half when Herrick was ejected from the game with a red card forcing Maryland to play a man down for the first time this season.
Following intermission, the game would even itself out, however, when Virginia's Matt Mitchell was tossed from the contest with a red card only six minutes into the second half.
Back-to-back shots by Brian Ownby and Jimmy Simpson put the Maryland defense to the test in and around the 65th minute. Ownby's effort forced MacMath to make a great save while Simpson's shot went wide across the box and past the far post.
Maryland mustered a quality drive three minutes later when Hall dribbled the ball down the field and passed it off to senior Graham Zusi who was fouled inside the box, setting up the third penalty kick for the Terrapins this season. Zusi drove the ensuing kick past Giallombardo for a 2-0 Terp cushion.
The third red card of the night was served at the 68:00 mark when Ownby was ejected causing a 10-to-9 Terp advantage. Virginia's team speed withstanding, LaBauex got past the Terrapin backline and tallied Virginia's first score of the game at 73:42.
In the 86th minute, Virginia came dangerously close to getting the equalizer after Jordan Evans' shot went just high of the post.
Maryland has now won seven consecutive contests and heads into Friday night's showdown against North Carolina in sole possession of second place in the ACC standings. No. 1 Wake Forest heads to Virginia for a match against the Cavaliers next Friday before the ACC Tournament gets rolling the week of Nov. 10th.
"Every time we play here it is a battle and this game definitely took a lot of strange twists and turns," head coach Sasho Cirovski said. "It is a hard place to win and I thought both individually and collectively it was a great effort by our team."
Maryland plays host to North Carolina on Friday at 8 p.m. for Senior Night at Ludwig Field in the regular-season finale.