By Jack Parry
A Monday night with low attendance still didn’t make a difference to the players on the pitch as No. 8 Maryland men’s soccer took on High Point at Ludwig Field in College Park. It was a quick turnaround for coach Sasho Cirovski’s squad, coming off a 2-1 victory against Michigan on Friday.
“The craziness of the soccer schedule is well documented,” Cirovski said Friday. “It’s something we hope certainly changes very soon.”
Another dominant performance by Maryland on both sides of the ball gave the Terps a Monday night victory 2-0 over High Point, keeping their recent run of form alive, and giving them a two game win streak.
The game began with both teams attacking and each squad deciding to take a lot of offensive chances. This was reflected by the movement between forward Jacen Russell Rowe and Redshirt Freshman forward Joshua Bolma in the 10th minute, that set Bolma up in the box on the fast break as he made an excellent run behind the backline. The shot was ultimately saved by the High Point keeper Holden Trent.
While the High Point offense was throwing balls in their attacking half, Freshman Defender William Kulvik saw a lot of attention. He had a few interceptions in the beginning of the first half, and also managed to mark High Point’s forwards quite effectively.
The first half started to get spicy around the 28th minute, when a beautiful lead pass by Jacen Russell Rowe found Junior forward Hunter George in space who decided to dance a little bit. This dance was followed by a piercing shot which was saved by the outstretched palms of the Panthers goalkeeper Trent.
The chances began to get closer in the half and the game changed on a dime from the boot of Terp Senior forward Justin Gielen. A shot from outside the box from Senior forward Brayan Padilla deflected off of Panther defender Finn McRobb right in front of the goal. Gielen was there to clean up the mess, and poked the ball to the right of Trent to put the Terrapins up 1-0 in the 38th minute.
As halftime approached, Maryland kept a hold of their lead and headed into the break with a 1-0 lead.
As the second half began, the Terrapins were not interested in just preserving the win. Forward Jacen Russell Rowe got in the mix up front again as he lashed a volley from outside of the box in the 47th minute which ended up flying toward the student section.
The Panthers also tried to get something going in the beginning of the second half, with captain Mason Marcey taking on a shot from distance. A shot which happened to sail up above the crossbar.
Despite the lack of possession by High Point, they kept getting closer and closer. Freshman midfielder Alex Abril tried his hand at a shot on his left to the bottom right corner. However Terrapins keeper Jamie Lowell was between the sticks to produce a beautiful diving save to his left in the 59th, using every inch of his gloves.
Despite the presence at the other end, Maryland wasn’t out of it one bit, and Bolma almost got them back into it. With a burst of speed in transition, Bolma had possession in the box in the 63rd and took on a shot that sailed toward the Maryland student section.
In the 66th minute, keeper Jamie Lowell went down with an injury and had to be substituted. His substitute was the keeper which he is being rotated for, his roommate Niklas Neumann.
The hits kept on coming for Joshua Bolma in the 76th as he struck the crossbar on what would have been Maryland’s best goal of the season. In a Messi like trance, Bolma went one on one on the left attacking side and weaved with his left then right then took it on his right.
However the Panthers kept on coming, as they were looking for a goal to equalize. Redshirt Freshman midfielder David Greene had a cross into the box which turned into a shot that got past Niklas Neumann. In the knick of time, Terrapin captain and defender Chris Rindov cleared the ball up and off the line for a corner, saving an equalizing goal in the 78th minute.
Right after they almost tied the game, High Point had a massive error that put them into a two goal hole in the 82nd. The ball came to defender Josh Dubost in his own box who whiffed the clearance kick. The ball sailed up past the keeper and into the right side netting. A fortunate series of events for the Terps that handed them a 2-0 advantage.
The game calmed down after the goal as there were no meaningful chances for either side as the game petered out and left Maryland with another win, putting them at 5-1 on the season. As the season trudges on, the Terps face off with the Ohio State Buckeyes in Columbus on Friday night.
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