A trip far away from home seemed to be just what the Terps needed after ending last season on a six game winless streak at Ludwig Field, but the new season for the Maryland soccer team didn’t bring the fresh start they were looking for.
The Terps (0-1-0) traveled to the Seattle to face No. 24 Washington (1-0-0) on Friday night looking for redemption after last season’s losing streak and early losses in both the Big Ten and NCAA Tournament. Instead, Maryland left with a 2-0 loss thanks to two first-half goals by the Huskies.
Both Maryland and Washington started the game with high intensity and pressure, which established an attacking mindset that would sustain for the entirety of the game.
While the Terps usually show a four-man defense, senior captain and left back Chase Gasper and sophomore right back Ben Di Rosa pushed up for most of the game to support the attack.
That left junior Johannes Bergmann and Donovan Pines anchoring the defense as the only players separating the Huskies from redshirt junior goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair in goal. The Terps’ midfield unit, as well as Gasper and Di Rosa, did their part in hustling back to cover Washington counterattacks, but it only took one good look for Washington to change the momentum of the first half.
Huskies’ redshirt junior Joey Parish carried the ball straight through the Maryland midfield and launched a shot on goal that St. Clair was able to punch out. The save was short-lived, though, as redshirt junior forward Scott Menzies crashed the box and snuck the ball past St. Clair to put the Huskies up 1-0 with just under 15 minutes to go in the half.
Neither Washington nor Maryland had any real threats of scoring for the first 30 minutes of the half, but the floodgates seemed to open for the Huskies after the initial goal.
The Huskies continued to put pressure on St. Clair and the Terps’ defense in the coming minutes, until they broke through in the 38th minute to go up 2-0. Redshirt senior forward Kyle Coffee scored off a Parish cross from the left wing, with a one-touch finish to the bottom right corner to seal the game.
And though the Terps put more pressure on Washington redshirt junior goalkeeper Saif Kerawala in the second half, peppering him with 10 shots compared to their two shots in the first half, the Terps were unable to mount a comeback.
Despite the two goals scored in the first half, St. Clair had a strong night with six saves and kept Huskies defender-turned-forward Noah Whitman scoreless for the night.
St. Clair and the rest of the Terps will have to readjust and fill the defensive gaps in the team before next Friday when they play another Pac-12 foe, this time against defending national champions and top-ranked Stanford at home at Ludwig Field.
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