Despite an even stat sheet, No. 4 Northwestern (9-2, B1G 1-1) defeated No. 7 Maryland field hockey (7-3, B1G 1-2) 3-1 to earn their biggest win of the season.
As the game neared its end, Northwestern appeared to have earned their fourth shutout of the season, but the Terps managed to score in the final minute. Midfielder Emma DeBerdine sent a pass to forward Hope Rose who buried the shot for her fifth goal of the season. Ultimately, Maryland fell, 3-1, at home against one its toughest opponents.
Northwestern broke the scoreless tie three minutes into the second quarter, when the Wildcats earned a two-on-nothing breakaway opportunity. Wildcats forward Bente Baekers and midfielder Maddie Zimmer raced past all the Terps to face Terps goalie Noelle Frost. Baekers took a shot but Frost made a diving save. The ball came to Zimmer who made Maryland pay to give the Wildcats a 1-0 lead.
“I think they are very quick to capitalize on our turnovers and transition the field well,” midfielder Brooke DeBerdine said.
The Terps then earned two penalty corners in a row, but were unable to convert.
Rose was the star of the first half for the Terps with three of their six total shots. Rose had a promising opportunity late in the first half but it missed the target. The reigning freshman of the week led the team with five shots.
“Hope’s speed and her skills to run it down in the circle is so threatening for other teams, so with her we got to keep capitalizing on that and then let those shots drop,” defender Rayne Wright said.
The Terps had a big opportunity at the beginning of the second half, but the Northwestern defense intercepted Rose’s initiating pass for the attack.
Near the end of the third quarter, Wildcats forward Clara Roth sent the ball into the corner of the net and it skirts inside the other post for a goal to double the Wildcats lead.
The Terps earned another penalty corner to close out the third quarter, but defender Maura Verleg’s shot crashed into the post.
The Wildcats extended their lead again, two minutes into the fourth quarter, when the Wildcats capitalized on their penalty corner. Bakers punched the ball into the back of the net to give the Wildcats a 3-0 lead.
“Our corner defense is typically very strong, it was not at its strength today,” Meharg said.
Wildcats goalie Annabe Skubisz recorded eight saves while Frost had two.
The Terps have a quick turnaround before facing No. 1 Iowa on Sunday in College Park at noon.
“I know that we can go out and play a very well matched game if we clean up some things,” Brooke DeBerdine said.