No. 5 Virginia field hockey traveled to College Park, Md. to take on No. 2 Maryland for the final game of the regular season. The Cavaliers (11-6, 3-3 ACC) took the advantage over the Terrapins (16-2, 7-1 Big Ten) in shots and broke even on penalty corners, but were unable to capitalize on any strike, resulting in a 2-0 shutout.
The game got off to an exciting start in the first quarter, with shots taken on both ends of the field. Senior striker Laura Janssen got the action started for the Cavaliers with a shot that went wide, while Maryland’s first offensive strike was taken off of a penalty corner by graduate student midfielder Danielle van Rootselaar — resulting in a save by Virginia’s freshman goalkeeper Jet Trimborn.
The first substantial possession of the game for either team came when Maryland was granted another penalty corner in the last two minutes of the period. Graduate student midfielder Bibi Donraadt inserted the ball to graduate student defender Riley Donnelly, who found the bottom right corner of the goal with a drag flick, putting the Terrapins up one goal going into the second quarter.
With aspirations to tie the score, the Cavaliers went into the second quarter strong, taking three shots off of a penalty corner and securing a second one. On the second corner, the insertion was off the mark and was passed way past the circle into the possession of the Terrapins, who quickly broke down the field with numbers against the out-of-position Virginia defense. Senior midfielder Belle Bressler dribbled the ball into the circle and sent the ball around Trimborn to set up sophomore forward Hope Rose who dove towards the goal to get the tip-in and put Maryland up 2-0.
After the half, possession was split between the two teams with a lot of back and forth in the midfield. Maryland was given an opportunity to extend its lead to three when junior and senior midfielders Meghen Hengerer and Adele Iacobucci were both given green cards, but the Cavalier defense was solid, not allowing a single shot in the third quarter.
Virginia had four more close scoring chances in the game, the first and second being blocked shots by graduate student midfielder Annie McDonough and sophomore back Jans Croon. Two more wide shots in the fourth quarter by sophomore striker Taryn Tkachuk and sophomore midfielder Noa Boterman were the last attempts by the Cavaliers to come back, but no shot could find the net, sending Virginia home scoreless.
“It’s a game of inches, and this time of year, grit and grind make all the difference in the world,” Coach Michele Madison said. “All the little things make a big impact. Do the little things right, and big things happen. Second season starts now with the ACC Championship on Tuesday.”
Looking ahead, the ACC Tournament will begin on Nov. 1 in Durham, N.C. The bracket finalizing Virginia’s position will be released on Friday.