Field Hockey: Huskies falls to Maryland in NCAA Quarterfinal

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UConn Field Hockey, pictured here during their game against Liberty on Oct. 18, 2018, had their season come to an end against Maryland. (Eric Wang/ The Daily Campus)

UConn field hockey’s season ended in a heartbreaking overtime loss to Maryland in the second round of the NCAA tournament Sunday afternoon. The Huskies beat Rutgers to earn a spot in the quarterfinal matchup with the Terrapins.

Sunday’s matchup was the second meeting between the two top-five programs this season. Both games ended with the same result.

Abby Gooderham put the Huskies on the board first when she scored at the 23:35 mark. The freshman used a penalty corner to fire a shot into the net from the top of the circle. UConn held a 5-1 advantage in penalty corners in the contest.

It took Maryland (21-2) all of two minutes to tie the game up when a tipped shot found its way past goaltender Cheyenne Sprecher. The two teams would take the 1-1 score into halftime.

The scoreless second half proved these two teams prepared well for their third matchup in the past calendar year. UConn beat Maryland in last year’s national championship game before the Terrapins snapped their 33-game win streak in Storrs earlier this season. The Huskies were looking for redemption as the game headed into overtime.

Both teams had scoring opportunities in the overtime period but Maryland ultimately prevailed. After shutting down a UConn breakaway, Maryland took the ball downfield and scored at 76:57 to end the game. The Terrapins outshot the Huskies 12-11 and will play Princeton in the NCAA tournament semifinals.

Maryland was the only team in the country to beat UConn twice in their impressive 19-4 campaign. UConn had also lost to Princeton and North Carolina.

While offense was tough to come by in Sunday’s contest, UConn scored more than enough in Friday’s 5-0 rout against Rutgers. Five different Huskies scored en route to Sprecher’s eighth shutout in goal this season.

Svea Boker got the rally started, scoring first on a pass from Cecile Pieper. Boker would later return the favor, setting up Pieper to score one herself. Maddy Wray, Karo Kueskes and Jessica Dembrowski knocked in the other three scores with Amanda Collins and Antonia Tiedtke assisting. Dembrowski scored the lone goal of the second half.

As the season comes to an end, UConn will say goodbye to graduating seniors Ashley Rich, Amelia Iacobucci, Amanda Collins and Cecile Pieper. The group finishes their time in Storrs with an overall record of 86-7, racking up eight Big East championships, three Final Four appearances and the 2017 National Championship.


Kevin Arnold is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at kevin.arnold@uconn.edu.

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