By Borja Rebaza
The Maryland women’s soccer team continued to struggle in Big Ten play, dropping a mid-week matchup at home 2-0 against Ohio State on a cold, rainy night in College Park.
Maryland entered Thursday victims of three straight losses, including a road trip in which it did not score. Ohio State came in ranked No. 12 in the nation and on a five game winning streak, with its latest victory coming against rival Michigan. The Terps had not won since Sept. 22, with their winless streak lasting five games. Maryland came in looking to bounce back and finish strong down the home stretch of the regular season.
Both teams traded early corners, but neither was able to convert as the two sides settled into the game. From there, the game fell into a stalemate, with neither team able to muster up an offensive threat. The breakthrough finally came fifteen minutes in for the Buckeyes when an overshot corner was sent back into the box, headed down by Meg Kammerdeiner, and then finished by Eleanor Gabriel to put the visitors ahead.
Maryland tried to respond five minutes later off of a corner of its own, but after a hectic scramble for the ball in the box, Ohio State was able to clear the ball to stay in the lead. The Buckeyes tried to extend the lead with 12 minutes left in the half, but a tremendous save from Rachel Egyed kept the Terps in the game. The Terps continued their push for an equalizer, but closed out the half not having had a real chance on goal.
The Buckeyes came up firing in the second half, but Egyed continued to stop shots to keep her team within striking distance. Ohio State was also hurt by eight offsides calls against its offense.
“We were really tight in the back, they had to earn their goals,” said Maryland head coach Ray Leone after the game.
Despite the Maryland defense’s best efforts, Ohio State was able to extend its lead in the 72nd minute when a deflection sent Eleanor Gabriel in on goal. She was able to cleanly finish off the shot for her second of the game to double the Terrapin deficit.
Maryland was able to find a couple chances, but the Buckeye defense did not relent and held on for the road victory.
“Despite the scoring, we can fight with these teams,” defender Julia New said after the game.
Leone’s squad looks to rebound this Sunday at Ludwig against the Penn State Nittany Lions.