Terps Host FILA Classic With Indiana, Virginia, and South Carolina
COLLEGE PARK, Md. - The No. 8 Maryland men's soccer team (2-0) will host two-time defending national champion Indiana on Friday, Sept. 8, at 7:30 p.m. in the team's home opener at Ludwig Field. Maryland is coming off a two-win weekend at the Virginia Classic this past weekend, a 4-1 win over Jacksonville and a 3-0 shutout win over South Florida to conclude the Terps' tournament action. No. 3 Virginia will meet No. 25 South Carolina at 5 p.m., in the opening game of the Maryland/FILA Classic on Friday night, before the Terps meet the Hoosiers in game two.
Tournament action concludes on Sunday, Sept. 10, with Virginia and Indiana clashing at noon, and Maryland meeting South Carolina at 2:30 p.m.
The Maryland/Indiana Series: Friday's match-up will be only the second in the history of these two programs, with Indiana taking the 1-0 lead after last season's game. The Terps suffered a 1-0 loss to the eventual national champion Hoosiers at the adidas/IU Credit Union Classic in Bloomington.
The Maryland/South Carolina Series: Get ready for another history-making outting on Sunday, as Maryland and South Carolina square-off for their first-ever NCAA soccer battle. In the Terps only other inaugural series meeting this year, Sept. 3 against South Florida, Maryland came out on top of a 3-0 win at the Virginia Classic.
Three Terrapins Receive All-Tournament Honors: Junior defender Nick Downing (Redmond, Wash.), senior midfielder Rob Birch (West Islip, N.Y.) and sophomore midfielder Scott Buete (Bowie, Md.) all received all-tournament honors at the Virginia Classic Tournament for their performances throughout the weekend. Downing had three assists, including the assist on both game-winning goals. Birch turned in a solid effort in the midfield, scoring his second career goal. Buete turned in a three-point weekend, scoring the final goal of Maryland's 3-0 win over South Florida, and assisting a goal during the Jacksonville game.
Maryland In Ludwig Field Openers: The Terrapins hold a 3-1-1 record in Ludwig Field openers heading into Friday‚s meeting with Indiana. Maryland has wins over Santa Clara (3-2, 1997), American (2-0, 1998) and Marshall (4-0). The Terrapins haven‚t lost a home opener since 1996 when local rival George Mason defeated Maryland 1-2 on opening day. Maryland‚s first-ever game at Ludwig Field was neither a win nor a loss, but rather a 2-2 tie to ACC rival Virginia on Sept. 10, 1995.
There's No Plce Like Home: Maryland has a 39-14-3 record at Ludwig Field since its opening in 1995. The Terrapins are looking for win No. 40 on their home field when two-time defending national champion Indiana comes to town Friday. Maryland has pitched a shutout in its last two home openers, beating Marshall 4-0 in 1999 and American 2-0 in 1998.
The Maginificent Seven: Seven different Terrapins scored goals for Maryland during the Virginia Classic Tournament this past weekend. Scott Buete, Rob Birch, Clarence Goodson (Fairfax Station, Va.), A.J. Herrera (Albuquerque, N.M.), Reed Rickert (Sewickly, Pa.), Abe Thompson (Fairfax Station, Va.) and Bryan Vitagliano (Scottsdale, Ariz.) each converted for the Terps‚ offense over the span of two games. Buete also added an assist and is tied with co-captain Nick Downing for Maryland‚s leading scorer with three point after Downing assisted on three Terrapin goals. Co-captain Beckett Hollenbach (Havertown, Pa.) joins the six-player pack with two points after adding another two assists, both against Jacksonville.
Focus On Scoring By Committee: Head coach Sasho Cirovski laid it out before the season, the loss of the Terps' No. 1 and 2 scorers from last season would be spelled not by just one Terrapins this season, but by numerous Terps. Scoring by committeeš would be essential to the team's success according to Cirovski. Two wins and seven different goal scorers later, and the prediction is sticking like glue.
The New Kids on the Block: Just the facts: these kids can play. Three out of seven Terps who scored goals in the Virginia Classic this past weekend are freshman (Clarence Goodson, Abe Thompson, and Bryan Vitagliano). Add sophomores Scott Buete, A.J. Herrera, and Reed Rickert‚s goals and you have six out of seven, or 86 percent of Maryland's goals that have been scored by underclassmen.
Downing Dazzles For Terrapins: In two wins for the Terps, Nick Downing posted an outstanding three assists for Maryland, including the assists on both game-winning goals during the Virginia Classic Tournament. The Hermann Trophy finalist performed brilliantly on corner kicks, with two of the Terps‚ seven goals coming off corner kick sequences.
Anchoring the Terrapin defense, Downing and the Terps also held their opponents to a .5 goals per game average, which included a shutout against South Florida for Maryland's second win of the tournament. Downing, a junior co-captain, was also selected to the Virginia Classic All-Tournament team for his efforts throughout the weekend.
Lewis in Goal Through two games, senior starter Christian Lewis (Ellicott City, Md.) is showing few signs that offseason back surgery will inhibit the Terps‚
third-year starter at all. Lewis begins the year 2-0, including a shutout against South Florida on Sept. 3. The Maryland native gave up just one goal in 164 minutes and added two saves. Entering the Maryland/FILA Classic, he has a 0.55 goals-against average.
TERPS BY THE NUMBERS
1: Sasho Cirovski and Shannon Higgins-Cirovski are the first married head coaching duo to be ranked in the NSCAA Top 10 simultaneously.
3:Maryland is one of three schools which have both their men's and women's teams ranked in the NSCAA Top 10 this week. Maryland (Men-8, Women-9), UCLA (Men-1, Women-8), and Connecticut (Men-10, Women-6) are the three with both teams in the Top 10.
8 and 9: The Terrapins' men's and women's soccer programs are ranked 8h and 9th,
respectively, in this week's NSCAA polls.