By: Justin Fitzgerald
When Maryland men’s soccer has needed a late goal, it looks to Gordon Wild. Tuesday night against Delaware was no exception.
The sophomore tied the game in the 76th minute, and then put through the game winning header in the 107th 3minute to give the Terps a 3-2 win over Delaware.
“We have a love affair with our fans and we always seem to want to make things exciting to keep them coming back,” head coach Sasho Cirovski said. “It’s a great result against a very good Delaware team.”
Wild gave the Terps the lead in the fourth minute, and tonight was his first hat trick in a Maryland uniform.
“Gordon’s a great player,” sophomore Eryk Williamson said. “I kind of expected it from him.”
Amar Sejdic passed it in at the top right corner of the box initially looking for Williamson, who whiffed on a back heel. The ball rolled to Wild, who put it in the back of the net.
The Terps were without Alex Crognale, and it showed in the first half. Delaware was the more aggressive team over the first 25 minutes, and Guillermo Delgado tied the game in the 23rd minute on a header. Cirovski called Delgado one of the best forwards in the country, and not having Crognale made it tougher to stop him.
“When you have one of the best centerbacks in the country not playing against one of the best forwards in the country, you’re going to get exposed a few times,” Cirovski said.
Following the goal, Cirovski turned to the bench. D.J. Reeves and George Campbell checked in as usual, but he also sent in Luca Levee, Keegan Kelly, and Jorge Calix to try to provide an offensive spark.
From that point, Maryland was the more aggressive team, and had two solid chances late in the half to retake the lead. After a shot from Sebastian Elney was deflected in the 40th minute, Donovan Pines missed a header off the ensuing corner kick. Then in the 44th minute, George Campbell had his penalty kick blocked by Delaware goalie Todd Morton after Reeves was fouled in the box.
“I thought all three players we brought in really helped us tonight. I thought Keegan Kelly was the inspiration tonight.” Cirovski said.
The 25th year coach kept his subs in for the second half, as Jake Rozhansky, Elney, and Wild started the half on the bench. Before the trio checked in in the 61st minute, Maryland’s best opportunity came when Williamson had a shot blocked from just outside the box.
The Terps had another chance in the 58th minute, but Campbell was blocked by Morton again.
Maryland started to get careless with its passes and Delaware took advantage, almost taking the lead on two corners in the 68th minute. Then in the 73rd minute, Marco Siverio sent a pass to Delgado, who ran past Suli Dainkeh and scored to give the Blue Hens a 2-1 lead.
But Delaware’s lead didn’t last long. In the 76th minute, Campbell back heeled the ball to Chris Odoi-Atsem on the far right side, who passed it in to a charging Wild to tie the game.
In the first overtime, Maryland had four shots but failed to score. The Terps continued to attack in the second overtime, and had a great chance to win it when Rozhansky was fouled in the box, but Wild put the free kick high. But he redeemed himself a minute later, heading in a pass from Williamson to give the Terps a 3-2 win.
“I had a feeling I let the team down on the PK,” Wild said. “I’m glad Eryk gave me that pass and I could redeem myself a little bit.”
Maryland improves to 14-0-2 with the win, and completed their first perfect home regular season since 2005. The team will wrap up their season on Sunday at Michigan at 1 p.m, and the game will be broadcast on the Big Ten Network.