No. 7 Maryland field hockey loses a heartbreaker to No. 1 Iowa

Courtesy of Maryland Athletics

Two minutes after the Terps tied the game up at 1-1 off a penalty corner, the Hawkeyes drove the ball right down the field. Hawkeyes midfielder Nikki Freeman sent the ball into the circle to forward Maddy Murphy who deflected the ball into the net to retake the lead. 

Murphy’s goal was the game winner, carrying No. 1 Iowa (12-0, B1G 4-0) to a 2-1 victory against No. 7 Maryland field hockey (7-4, B1G 1-3). 

“A really disappointing outcome,” head coach Missy Meharg said. “I thought we dominated the game in the first quarter enough to get some shots and penalty corners. They just found a way to tick the minutes away and we just allowed them to do that.”

The game remained scoreless until the end of the third quarter, but the Terps defense shined for the first 44 minutes.  

In the middle of the second quarter, the Hawkeyes appeared to have a prime scoring opportunity when they intercepted a Terps pass, but defender Riley Donnelly intercepted the ball back and pushed it up the field. 

With under four minutes to go until halftime, the Hawkeyes earned a run of four penalty corners, but the Terps corner defense played strong. Midfielder Brooke DeBerdine stopped the penalty corner run, by intercepting the ball before the Hawkeyes could get a shot off. 

“Our penalty corner defense is really outstanding,” Meharg said.

With 3:51 left in the third quarter, the Terps earned their first penalty corner of the match, but the Hawkeyes blocked forward Hope Rose’s shot and midfielder Bibi Donraadt was unable to come up with the ball before it left the circle. 

As the third quarter wound down, the Hawkeyes sent the ball into the circle to Murphy who passed the ball to forward Leah Zellner. Then, Zellner tapped the ball over Terps goalie Noelle Frost who stepped out of the cage. 

With 12:34 left in the fourth quarter, the Terps drew a huge penalty corner and the Terps did not waste the opportunity. Donnelly sent a rocket past Iowa’s goalie Grace McGuire to tie the game at 1-1 that electrified the crowd.  

“The moment is just so exciting, but then after that you take about 15 seconds and then it’s back into the game plan,” Donnelly said. 

Iowa would then score the game winning goal, but the Terps would not go down without a fight. The Terps earned four more penalty corners, but were unable to convert on any of them with three of the shots going wide and McGuire saved the other. 

The Terps pulled Frost with four minutes to go to try to find an equalizer, but were unable to. 

Despite the tough loss, the team is still thinking positively. 

“We are a great field hockey team,” Brooke DeBerdine said. “We have so many good players and we are just missing that little connection there. We know that we are in every game we are playing now.” 

The Terps look to snap their two game losing streak on Thursday against No. 15 Virginia at Charlottesville.