Dec 13, 2013; Chester, PA, USA; Virginia Cavaliers midfielder Jordan Allen (8) fights for the ball with Maryland Terrapins midfielder Tsubasa Endoh (31) at PPL Park. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports
Maryland continued their winning ways on Saturday night against Ohio State. The night started with a ceremony for the senior class, and concluded with Maryland grabbing a much needed 1-0 win. Entering the game, Ohio State was two points ahead of Maryland for second place in the Big Ten. Thanks to George Campbell’s goal and Maryland’s defense, the Terps got the full three points to move one point ahead of Ohio State for second place.
Saturday was a windy night in College Park, and this played a factor throughout the evening. Ohio State’s goalie, Alex Ivanov, had to deal with it in the first half and Maryland’s Zack Steffen was against the wind in the second half. Both goalies struggled while against the wind to clear balls past the midfield line, which put their defenses in a tough situation. In the first half Maryland played this to their advantage, and looked to press on goal kicks and take advantage of the shorter clearance.
The Terrapins pressure was a theme of the night, with Sasho’s boys constantly putting pressure on Ohio State to dominate possession and create goal-scoring chances. In the first half, Maryland’s pressure created several free kick and corner kick opportunities. Maryland took six corner kicks in the first half, and had three set pieces coming just outside of the box from fouls. In total, Maryland outshot the Buckeyes 7-0 in the first half, but couldn’t find the back of the net.
Mael Corboz showed off his free kick ability throughout the first half. The Rutgers transfer has shown to be one of the team’s best technical players. He has taken all but one penalty kicks this season and on Saturday he was taking the Maryland free kicks. Corboz almost beat Ivanov on a free kick mid way through the first half as he curled the shot around the wall and almost lead Ivanov too far, unfortunately a quick adjustment helped the goalie to come back to the ball and complete the save. Later in the first half, Corboz put another free kick about a foot over the bar.
Both teams had a player on yellow at halftime following a chippy first half. The game was important for the two teams as they entered the game looking to maintain a shot at the Big Ten regular season title. The referees did a good job of managing the emotions of the night and not giving out too many yellow cards.
In the second half, Maryland found the critical goal to grab the lead. In the seventy-fourth minute, Tsubasa Endoh was able to deliver a corner kick into the box. After the ball took several deflections, freshman George Campbell got his chest to the ball and put it past Alex Ivanov for the games first and only goal. With the wind, Maryland struggled to deliver corner kicks into dangerous areas as they were often going too long. However, this time Endoh put the corner kick into the middle of the box for his team to attack. Dan Metzger got the first touch and Alex Crognale got a touch afterwards before Campbell put it in.
Following the goal Ohio State began to press more to try and find a late equalizer. Thanks to Alex Corgnale and Chris Odoi-Atsem, Ohio State never challenged Zack Steffen. Both center backs played the full ninety and were critical pieces in preventing Ohio State from getting many chances. The Buckeyes finished the night with four shots, but only two that required action from Steffen. Crognale and Odoi-Atsem maintained great positioning, which allowed them to pick out passes and clear them before they became threats.
Tsubasa Endoh played another great game on Saturday night. Not only was he involved in the only goal, but also his ball control helped seal the game. While Endoh was out, Maryland primarily attacked through Mikey Ambrose and Michael Sauers on the left side, but with Endoh back, Maryland is using the full pitch to attack. The combination of Endoh and Dan Metzger in the midfield provides Maryland with ball control that allows them to maintain possession better, and close out games.
With the three points in hand, Maryland moved into second place on Saturday night. Entering the game versus Ohio State, Indiana was tied with Maryland at ten points. The Hoosiers traveled to Madison on Saturday night to play a Wisconsin team that had no points in the Big Ten. Fortunately for the Terps, Wisconsin played Indiana to a 2-2 draw, which limited Indiana to only picking up one point. Maryland’s season finale is Wednesday night at Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights are currently on a two game losing streak and in eighth place in the Big Ten. With a Penn State loss on Sunday, Maryland would go to New Jersey with a chance to win their first Big Ten regular season title.
Maryland Starters Vs Ohio State
Gk: Zack Steffen
Def: Alex Crognale, Mikey Ambrose, Jereme Raley, Chris Odoi-Atsem
Mid: Michael Sauers, Dan Metzger, Mael Corboz, Tsubasa Endoh
For: Alex Shinsky, Mikias Eticha
Goal: Campbell (2) – 75’
Discipline: Ambrose (Yellow) – 39’; Crognale (Yellow) – 55’