The Maryland Terrapins men’s soccer defeated their second top-ten team in as many games, beating the second ranked Connecticut Huskies, 1-0, in College Park Tuesday night.
Maryland held UConn’s vaunted scoring attack to three shots on goal, as the Huskies were shut out for the first time this season. It was also Connecticut’s first loss of the year. “It wasn’t the prettiest game, but it was a great win.” coach Sasho Cirovski said. “I thought we could have a little more malice in the attack and a little more quality in keeping the ball, but Connecticut is obviously a great team.”
The Terps scored the only goal in 35th minute of play, when substitute Paul Torres crossed a shot in to the box. The ball richocheted off a Husky defender and found the head of freshman midfielder Patrick Mullins, who sent it in for the score. Mullins, also a substitute, has now scored in each of the past two games. “Paul did a great job keeping it alive sending a cross in,” Mullins said. “The ball was a little scuffled up and it was just in the air and I tacked it and put it in. [Freshman defender] Gordon [Murie] was making fun of me, said it was the softest header he’d ever seen, but it was just in the right spot, so it worked out well.”
In the 53rd minute, the Huskies nearly were able to tie the game up, as an opportunity arose after a corner kick from sophomore forward Carlos Alvarez. Junior midfielder Tony Cascio, UConn’s leading scorer, got a shot on goal, and the ball went past MacMath and seemed headed toward the back of the net. However, the shot deflected off the hand of Husky senior midfielder Robert Brickley, going out of bounds for a Maryland goal kick.
Maryland forward Casey Townsend was almost able to tie it up in the 87th minute, as he was able to spring past the Husky defenders and get a shot off, missing wide right. UConn sophomore forward Stephane Diop answered soon after, floating a shot over the outstretched hands of MacMath, but the bail sailed a few inches over the net.
Junior midfielder Tony Cascio, UConn’s leading scorer, had a very good game, showing fancy footwork and getting off four shots. However, the Terps were able to keep him in check, thanks to a great effort by goalie Zac MacMath and the entire Maryland back line, led by center backs Ethan White and Alex Lee. “[Cascio]‘s a great player,” Lee said. “Whenever they got the ball, we didn’t let him turn in. I thought we did a good job closing him down.”
Maryland now faces back-to-back road games, as they travel to Blacksburg, Va. To face the Virginia Tech Hokies on Friday. Four days later, they play at Lehigh.
Player of the Game – Lee. The defender has really come into his own at the center back position, leading the Terps to their second straight shutout over a top ten team. “Every game, I feel our back line is getting more connected,” he said. “And we just continue to get better as a back line every game.”