Photo Courtesy of Maryland Athletics

No. 8 Maryland field hockey dazzles, picks up 2-1 win over No. 2 Michigan

By Brandon Schwartzberg

With the game recently tied 1-1, No. 8 Maryland field hockey looked to regain their lead late in the third quarter. Midfielder Julianna Tornetta found fellow midfielder Bibi Donraadt near the goal, and Donraadt’s tip got just by the Michigan goalkeeper Anna Spieker to put Maryland ahead 2-1 as the fourth quarter approached.

Maryland took on No. 2 Michigan on the road Sunday afternoon in a high intensity conference affair. Maryland got out in front first, but Michigan tied it up in the third quarter. The Terps retook the lead shortly after, holding on to the narrow lead in the final quarter, and closing out a huge 2-1 win over a top team in the nation.

With the win, Maryland improved to 12-5 on the season. And with the loss, Michigan suffered just its second defeat of the year to move to 12-2 on the season.

The first quarter started out as an even back-and-forth affair, with neither team able to gain an early edge. However, with under five minutes left in the quarter, Maryland got onto the board first.

Aiming to put pressure on Michigan, Maryland midfielder Taylor Mason held possession of the ball looking to score. Mason fired a rocket into the lower left corner of the cage, flying right past the Michigan defense to put the Terps up 1-0.

Maryland played an excellent first quarter defensively, stopping the Wolverines when they were given chances to score. 

Neither team scored a goal in the second quarter, as both teams played strong defense. Maryland put up three more shots than the Wolverines in the quarter, but good saves from Michigan goalkeeper Anna Spieker kept the Terps from extending their lead. 

Maryland didn’t fire off any penalty corners in the first half, as you can only imagine that being the main thing head coach Missy Meharg wanted to change for the second half.

The Wolverines had three penalty corners themselves in the first half, but couldn’t convert on any of them. Michigan’s offense lacked firepower following two quarters of action, as they looked to find offensive rhythm in the second half.

Michigan came out as the aggressive team to start out the third quarter, firing off early shots, but the strong Maryland defensive play continued, as the Wolverines couldn’t convert on numerous penalty corners. That was until midfielder Sofia Southam converted on the Wolverines seventh corner of the game.

Wolverines midfielder Nina Apoola found Southam near the circle, who rifled in a rocket past Maryland goalkeeper Noelle Frost, tying the game at one-a-piece.

The goal for Southam was her 17th on the season, as she has been a driving force of the Michigan offense. Southam came into this one in the top five among all division one schools in goals per game.

The tie game did not last for long, as later in the third quarter, Maryland regained the lead.

Bibi Donraadt scored off a deflection, getting the ball just enough by Michigan goalkeeper Anna Spieker to put the Terps back in front 2-1, as they looked to close out the potential victory in the fourth quarter.

The excellent Maryland defense continued in the fourth quarter, as Michigan struggled to find anything on offense. The Wolverines pulled their goalkeeper with just under five minutes left in the quarter, looking for more offense.

The added offense for Michigan wasn’t enough to get onto the board again, as Maryland defended well during the final stages of the game, wrapping up a big time win against the number two team in the nation.

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