The Terps dominated until UConn scored twice in less than two minutes to make it interesting.
However, in spite of a two player disadvantage due to a green card late in the contest, No. 8 Maryland field hockey managed to hold on and beat No. 17 UConn 3-2 to carry head coach Missy Meharg to her 600th career win.
“We made some critical errors,” Meharg said. “And if you let the game go into the umpire’s hands, you are going to find yourself in trouble. I’m just happy that we had enough resilience and fortitude to finish it out.”
The Terps dominated possession throughout the game, firing 15 shots to the Huskies six shots.
Just five minutes into the game, the Terps struck first when defender Taylor Mason passed the ball across the circle to midfielder Emma DeBerdine who shot the ball to the left of Huskies goalie Cheyenne Sprecher to take an early 1-0 lead.
“We worked a lot in the past few days about finishing,” Emma DeBerdine said. “We all wanted to get in there and I just happened to get a touch on them.”
At halftime, the Terps had held the Huskies without a shot in the first half while taking eight shots.
The Terps earned two more penalty corners and finally converted on their fourth. The initial shot was blocked but the rebound came back to the Terps and Mason passed the ball to midfielder Belle Bressler who sent the ball into the left corner of the net to extend the Terps lead to 2-0.
“We did a great job reading how they play defense and we saw that they had a lot of long tackles so we just went around them a lot of times,” defender Maura Verleg said.
With just over four minutes left in the third quarter, UConn finally took their first shot of the game, but Terps goalie Noelle Frost saved the Huskies’ shot off her chest.
The Huskies retained possession and passed the ball around and earned a penalty corner, but defender Claire Jandewerth’s shot was blocked and sailed wide.
One minute into the fourth quarter, forward Hope Rose passed the ball to the middle of the circle where Emma DeBerdine scored her second goal of the game to give the Terps a 3-0 lead.
UConn earned another penalty corner with just under five minutes left in the match. Defender Kourtney Kennedy sent a rocket past Frost to narrow the deficit to two.
A little over a minute later, Huskies midfielder McKenna Sergi drove the ball into the circle and created space despite being surrounded by four Terps and scored to make it a one goal game.
However, the Terps kept the ball away from the Huskies to finish off Meharg’s 600th win and fans were able to see history.
The Terps will next head out west next weekend to face Michigan State and Michigan.