An Open Letter from The Crew
Nov. 30, 2012
From senior Crew member Eric Garment:
Maryland began 2012 with a revenge win over the Cardinals, dropping them 3-0 to start the campaign. This season started even better than the last, with the Terps not experiencing defeat until the final regular season match of the year at Wake Forest. Between Louisville and Wake were some of the best experiences I've had in The Crew.
There was a 3-2 win at NC State. There was the 2-0 win at Duke where we turned Koskinen Stadium into Ludwig South and were the camera's darlings. There was the unbelievable 1-0 overtime win against North Carolina, which will be part of Maryland lore forever. Keith Cardona's 89th minute penalty save on Rob Lovejoy and Schillo Tshuma's 99th minute winner led to two of the loudest eruptions I've ever heard at Ludwig.
In the ACC tournament, which was on something closer to home soil in Germantown, Clemson pushed Maryland to the brink of elimination, but marched on thanks to a late Mullins equalizer and Metzger's 2OT corner kick that found its way in. Two days later, buses of Crew members piled into a packed SoccerPlex to watch Maryland bring home their second ACC title in three years. The team piled onto the hill with The Crew in celebration, returning the love to the fans.
A week later, Maryland was tested by Brown in one of the toughest matches they've played all year. It took a Mullins wonderstrike and a Metzger flick in to keep the Terps alive, and their efforts were rewarded with a 5-1 drubbing of Coastal Carolina.
That brings us to this coming Saturday. Officially, Senior Night was a month ago against Clemson, but this is truly it. This is the final time that the senior class - be they players or students - will be on the pitch or in the stands supporting Maryland all the way. A trip to Hoover, Ala., and the College Cup hangs in the balance. Two years ago, one of the best teams in Maryland history missed out on an incredible chance to get there, and now that chance comes again.
The Terps already beat Louisville this year, but this match offers both sides a chance for revenge. Louisville wants to beat Maryland after the Terps topped them in the opener. Maryland wants to beat Louisville after they sent them out a year ago. It's going to be packed. It's going to be tense. It's going to be loud. But either way, it's going to be the end of an unbelievable era in my life. Sure, I'll still come to matches once I'm a graduate, but you're only a student for so long.
Including exhibitions and spring games, I've been to 67 Maryland men's soccer matches. A total of 16 of those were split between Germantown and true road games. I have put my all into loving this team, just as hundreds before me have and hundreds after me will. The list of names that ring true in my head is lengthy.
Mullins. Stertzer. Jane. Kemp. Woodberry. MacMath. Swaim. Cardona. Townsend. Herrick. Kassel. Yates. Cortes. Forbess. Rodkey. Leikvang. Lee. Cyrus. Torres. Ambrose. Tshuma. Francois. Pace. It goes on.
This will be my 68th Maryland soccer match as a student, and my last at Ludwig Field. It's been a four-year experience I'll never forget and hope to see continue in my future and the futures of others. To those of you who have been a part of it, either as a player, a fellow student, or an alumnus who showed devotion to the program, I thank you. You have helped make my time at Maryland beyond amazing. Let's get to Hoover. I want to see match number 69. I want to see match number 70. Let's bring home the cup.
We love you, and everywhere we follow, 'cause we support the Terrapins, and that's the way we like it.