Maryland men’s soccer’s woes continue, fall 1-0 to Penn State

Courtesy of Maryland Athletics

Stefan Copetti slipped through the Nittany Lion defense and received a pass from Max Riley inside the box. Copetti with the defense at his back had one man to beat, Kris Shakes, the Penn State keeper. Copetti shot off his right foot, right to the hands of Shakes who batted away the scoring opportunity. 

Maryland Men’s Soccer was held scoreless for the third time this season, losing to Penn State, 1-0, on Tuesday night. The win was Penn State’s first shutout win against Maryland since 2005. 

“It was a bit more of the same where we play well enough to get a result, but we just can’t seem to finish off [a] chance,” head coach Sasho Cirovski said. 

Peter Mangione scored the lone goal of the game in the 39th minute. The senior forward got the ball on the left side of the box and switched the ball to his left foot. Mangione found space and rocketed his kick past the diving Mikah Seger, squeezing it in the middle of Seger and the post, right to the back of the net. 

The goal was sparked by a giveaway from Seger. The Maryland keeper tried to cross the ball to a teammate on the right side of the field, while he was on the left. Seger’s pass floated in the air allowing time for a Penn State player to intercept the pass and get the ball to Mangione.

“I thought we played quite well,” Cirovski said. “We were in control of the match the entire first half and we made one costly error and obviously against an experienced team like Penn State and especially with a player like Peter Mangione they made us pay for it.” 

The goal seemed to add a charge to what was before a stagnant game. Neither team was able to break through the other’s defense at the start of the game. The Terps were able to get two shots on goal in the first half, but both were saved by Shakes. 

The Terps put up six more shots in the second half of the game, but none found their way past Shakes. The Nittany Lions put up eight shots of their own, four of which were on target. Seger saved all four, giving his offense a chance at an equalizer. Riley’s final shot went just over the crossbar as the seconds on the clock hit zero.

“Mikah kept us in the game with a couple of huge saves and it’s on us to put the ball in the back of the net,” Riley said. 

Maryland came into the game lacking some rotation players. Forward Colin Griffith and midfielder Joe Suchecki were both out for the game. Starting defenseman, William Kulvik, was also out due to receiving a red card in the Terrapins’ last game against Michigan. The absences led to the Terps’ starting lineup featuring three new names in Mack DeVries, Joe McDaid, and Cameron Gerber.

The Terps record falls to 1-3-2 on the season, their worst start since 2014. 

Maryland will face off against the Wisconsin Badgers in Madison, Wisconsin, Sunday afternoon.