Maryland field hockey defeats Ohio State following fourth-quarter comeback

Photo Courtesy of Maryland Athletics

The series had not been particularly close with No. 3 Maryland field hockey (7-0, B1G 1-0)

 winning 17 straight games against Ohio State, with the majority of those wins being blowouts. 

Today was different.

No. 23 Ohio State (3-2, B1G 0-1) showed fight through three quarters, but then Maryland did what they do best, scoring. 

The Terps scored three times in the final frame to earn their 18th straight win against the Buckeyes, defeating them 4-2.

With the come-from-behind victory, Maryland is off to a 1-0 start in conference play.

“We changed up the press in the front field,” head coach Missy Meharg said. “[Later] we play this kind of point defense and then put all this pressure on their side backs, which I think really changed it up for them.” 

For the first time all season, the Terps entered the fourth quarter trailing 2-1 before the game’s turning point.

Early in the fourth quarter, Buckeyes’ goalie Abby Danson wrapped the ball up, leading to a penalty stroke. Forward Hope Rose buried it, tying the game at 2-2. 

“[Rose] is really good at taking her strokes,” defender Riley Donnelly said. “The team has so much confidence in her, so when we get that opportunity, it’s a great opportunity to put a point on the board.”

The stroke ignited the offense as Maryland found the eventual game-winner a minute later. 

Midfielder Danielle van Rootselaar passed back to a wide-open midfielder, Leah Crouse, who had an open shot into the net.

“I think at this point of the game, we were going to pass to each other,” van Rootselaar said. “I got the ball and passed it. Leah got the ball and has such an accurate shot, and the goalie was somewhat out of state, so I knew it was going to go in.”

The scoring opportunities didn’t come easy for the Terps, as they struggled early on. 

The Buckeyes were able to drive into the circle on numerous occasions, creating pressure for goalie Paige Kieft, who made her second career start. 

The Terps entered halftime tied at 1-1 after Ohio State tied the game up 77 seconds after van Rootselaar scored the first goal of the game. 

Early in the third quarter, the Buckeyes took their first lead of the game after a penalty corner shot deflected off a Terps’ defender’s foot and into the net. 

For the first time all season, Maryland found itself trailing in the second half of a game, but they eventually responded, starting with Rose’s penalty stroke and Crouse’s third game-winning goal this season.

Van Rootselaar snapped the Buckeyes’ chance of coming back, scoring on an empty net with less than five minutes remaining, sealing Maryland’s seventh straight win. 

“We don’t go into a stall mode until we are under two minutes,” Meharg said. “I thought Dani was very mature. She went in with no goalkeeper and secured the game with a two-goal difference.”