Terp Field Hockey Wins Back-to-Back NCAA Titles
Nov. 19, 2006
Winston-Salem, N.C. - The Maryland field hockey team won its fifth national championship, winning back-to-back titles for the first time in school history. Senior Emily Trycinski scored the game's only goal at 30:08 to defeat top-ranked Wake Forest, 1-0, on their home field at Kentner Stadium.
"I am so proud of this team. We stayed away from the concept of defending a national championship all season," said Maryland head coach Missy Meharg. "We established a way of working and we were fortunate to be here and get a win. Wake Forest did a great job of keeping us out of the circle.
"The greatest thing about [Maryland] is they are hardworking and they stuck to the game plan today. We felt confident with the 1-0 lead because of the way we were playing. We pulled Paula [Infante] back which takes away from our offense, but our defense was outstanding."
The Terps' goal was set up by senior Paula Infante (Santiago, Chile) making a long pass into the circle on a restart. Freshman Ameliet Rischen's (Rotterdam, Netherlands), who tallied the game-tying goal in the semifinal win over Connecticut, shot was saved, creating a scramble off a save by Wake Forest goalkeeper Crystal Duffield. With Duffield unable to recover and still on the ground, Emily Trycinski (Nazareth, Pa.) gathered the ball and pushed it past the goal line.
The Terrapin defense was impenetrable this afternoon. The Deacons came into the weekend with the top-ranked offense in the nation. The Maryland backfield did not allow WFU to attempt a shot in the first half. Wake's first attempt was with just over 28 minutes remaining in the game and junior goalkeeper Kathryn Masson (Richmond, British Columbia) made the save to preserve the one-goal lead.
The Terrapins dodged a bullet with just 19 minutes left in the game. Masson came out of the net to a ball. WFU's Christine Suggs intercepted the clear inside the circle and had a wide open net, but her shot went inches wide as the scored remained, 1-0, in Maryland's favor.
"It feels awesome to finish [my career] this way," said Infante. "There are no regrets and we gave it our all. It's awesome to go out on a high note."
Maryland outshot Wake Forest, 7-4, the second-lowest shot attempts for the Terps this season. The combined 11 shots by both teams is the lowest number of shot attempts in a championship game. Both teams only had two penalty corners apiece, as well.
Five Terrapins were named to the all-tournament team. Infante becomes the first player in school history to earn NCAA All-Tournament honors four times. Joining her were senior Christina Restivo, who made two saves in the shootout of the semifinal game, sophomore Susie Rowe (London, England), junior Janneke van Leeuwen (Hilversum, Netherlands) and Trycinski. Wake Forest's Kristi Harshman, Jamie Whitten, Lauren Crandall and Michelle Kasold, UConn's Lizzy Peijs and Duke's Laura Suchoski.
It was the third meeting between the teams. The Terps won the regular-season matchup, 3-2, at Kentner Stadium. The Deacons win the ACC Championship with a 1-0 win over Maryland in Chapel Hill, N.C. Wake Forest's only two losses of the season were to Maryland.
Maryland also won the NCAA title in 1987, 1993, 1999 and 2005, with 19th-year head coach Meharg leading the team to four of those championships. The Terps end the season with 23-2 record, the sixth 20-win season in the history of the program and the first in back-to-back seasons. The shutout is the Terps' 12th of the season, tying a school record set in 1991.
#2 Maryland (23-2) 1 0 - 1 #1 Wake Forest (22-2) 0 0 - 0GOALS: MD, Emily Trycinski, un, 30:08. WF, None. SHOTS: MD 7, WF 4. PENALTY CORNERS: MD 2, WF 2. SAVES: MD, Kathryn Masson 2 (0 GA, 70:00), WF, Crystal Duffield 2 (1 GA, 70:00).