By Shourjya Mookerjee
After a disappointing midweek loss to No. 12 Georgetown, Maryland men’s soccer continued its cold streak on Friday with another 1-0 loss to Coastal Carolina. The No. 3 Terps (10-2-3, 5-0-2 Big Ten) have now failed to score in two consecutive games, and lost back-to-back games for the first time since 2014.
Coastal Carolina took the lead in the 38th minute, off a pretty overhead finish from senior forward Frantzdy Pierrot. The 6-foot-4, 205-pound striker took his first touch on the ball from a throw-in, and flicked it up before a neat finish curled the ball in at the far post.
The Terps had a few chances to equalize directly after, including one that involved a nice one-two pass to set up a free shot for Jake Rozhansky, but all were saved by Chanticleers goalkeeper Braulio Linares-Ortiz.
Maryland’s first half was defined by scattered opportunities and some frustrating build-up play. The possession was even for the most part, but Coastal Carolina seemed to get the better opportunities on goal. The Terps finished with four shots to the Chanticleers’ six. Linares-Ortiz also went into the half with three saves to Dayne St. Clair’s two.
The second half was not much of a different story; it was a midfield battle from start to finish. In the final minutes of the game, the Terps strung together a couple chances but weren’t able to get off a shot.
Terps head coach Sasho Cirovski opted to go with junior forward DJ Reeves up top, his speedy super-sub from 2016, in his starting lineup, which was a controversial move. It meant that another junior forward Gordon Wild, a 17-time goalscorer and MAC-Hermann trophy finalist last year, would play his first game from the bench this season.
Eryk Williamson, this year’s leading goalscorer, also did not play at all in the second half. Cirovski offered an explanation after the game.
“Eryk is just exhausted,” Cirovski said. “I did not want to risk injury in the second half. He had no gas left in the tank.”
Coastal Carolina finished the game ahead in shots, 11-7, and tied with Maryland at three shots on goal. Neither team threatened the keeper with a shot on goal in the second half. The game was a chippy one, with a total of 23 fouls scored. Both teams ended with five corner kicks.
“There’s no reason any team should outwork us,” said senior captain George Campbell. “These two games are definitely something that we’re going to keep in the back of our heads, and we’re not going to let these go.”
The Terps will continue their four-game homestand to finish off the regular season on Tuesday, against VCU, which comes in at No. 33 in the NCAA men’s soccer RPI rankings. The game is set to start at 7 p.m. at Ludwig Field.