By Eddie Hobbs
When the 2017 season started, Jake Rozhansky was one of the the Maryland Terrapins’ core returning players. Now as a seasoned collegiate athlete, Rozhansky is ready to lead the Terps.
Rozhansky’s path to the top of Maryland’s depth chart isn’t as simple as some might think. He grew up in the Maryland area and attended Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, but decided to go to the University of Virginia to play for the Cavaliers in 2014.
Rozhansky started out as a featured player during his freshman year at Virginia, starting 21-of- 23 matches. He was a reliable role player for a Virginia team that went on to win the 2014 national title over UCLA. He was on the field for 2,998 minutes of play in his two years as a Cavalier.
Rozhansky had the skill set to play for a professional team after his sophomore year at Virginia, but decided to come back to Maryland and play for the Terps under head coach Sasho Cirovski.
This type of experience can help a team go a long way and Rozhansky has had time to grow in the Maryland program, while also bringing championship experience to the table.
“I think it just made me realize what it takes to win a championship,” Rozhansky said. “It is so hard with this college season and I think from that freshman year I learned a lot and I am trying to bring that to the team this year.”
Maryland ranks seventh in the nation in shots per game and fourth in the nation in shots on goal. Rozhansky has been a key cog in this high-powered offense and has been one of the main voices for the midfielders this year.
Last season Rozhansky started in all 21 matches for the Terps. He helped Maryland post a school-record 15-game winning streak to go along with his three goals and eight assists.
Rozhansky has been one of the most called upon players for head coach Sasho Cirovski. No. 12 has played 907 minutes, tied for the most minutes on the team with defender Chase Gasper.
Rozhansky has three goals and has six assists this season, already matching his goal total from last season. He is two assists from tying last year’s clip.
When Rozhansky entered his senior year, he became more comfortable with being the voice in the locker room. He has more confidence and swagger about him that he didn’t have in previous seasons. This is obvious because he has been sporting a yellow armband that symbolizes his hierarchy in the locker room and on the field, and Cirovski thinks he is a critical component of this year’s team.
“He is obviously a leader, he is the captain of our team,” Cirovski said of Rozhansky. “He has been great on and off the field, and he is a young man that does everything right. He is a terrific student and he is a great teammate and obviously he is having a great year on the field. Both in scoring goals and generating assists. He has been a joy to coach this year.”
It remains to be seen if Rozhansky will help bring a NCAA title back to his home state, but in his mind, he is prepared to do anything to do so.