Penn State Falls to No. 2 Maryland at Home
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA—Number 23 Penn State Women’s Lacrosse played No. 2 Maryland at Panzer Field and fought hard in the first half, but the Terrapins outscored the Nittany Lions 10-2 in the second half and won 17-6 to stay undefeated.
After starting the season with a 3-0 record, the Nittany Lions have struggled as of late losing their last four of five games. However, at the start of this game, Penn State looked like they were going to turn it around.
Maria Auth and Sydney Wolfington got the Nittany Lions up quickly in the first half with two quick goals. Maryland was able to answer the early Penn State run when they scored four unanswered goals to take a 7-4 lead to the locker room.
Maryland was able to make the halftime adjustments they needed and came out hot in the second half. At one point in the second half, the Terrapins scored nine straight goals and really put this game to bed.
Penn State goalkeeper Taylor Suplee faced many Maryland shots and did the best she could. Suplee allowed 16 goals, but also had 16 saves as well. Maryland dominated the time of possession in this game, putting Penn State’s defense in very tough situations. That led to Maryland’s success all game long.
Head coach Missy Doherty thought that, although Maryland did have 17 goals on the evening, Suplee still played very well.
“I think she did a great job,” said Doherty. “Maryland has some really great shooters and she did a good job holding her own there. She had a lot of free position shots, but we couldn’t ask her to do more.”
Penn State played majority of this game on its defensive end of the field. In the first half, the Nittany Lions played really solid defense for about 20 minutes before the Terrapins offense really got going.
Doherty thought that the defense did the best they could against this tough Maryland offense.
“It’s certainly hard to be on defense for as long as we were on defense,” said Doherty. “We were on defense today probably like 75 percent of the time would be my estimate, so you can only ask so much from your defense. I think they did a good job stopping the first, second and third options, but by the fifth and sixth options we got an eight meter called against us, so we really can’t blame the D.”
The Nittany Lions scoring was led by Kayla Brisolari and Auth. Out of Penn State’s six goals, Brisolari and Auth scored four of them.
As for Maryland, an array of players scored goals. Grace Griffin led the way with four goals, and Caroline Steele and Kali Hartshorn both had three goals. Brindi Griffin also had five assists. It was a total team effort for Maryland, especially in the second half.
Penn State, with the loss, now has a record of 4-5 overall and 0-2 in the Big Ten. It doesn’t get any easier for the Nittany Lions from here, as they travel to No. 6 Northwestern next Thursday. It will be interesting to see if Penn State can bounce back.
Doherty thinks her team will have to bring the same energy that they did in the first half to be successful next week.
“I think with the energy and how we started off the first half was awesome,” said Doherty. “We were competing with them, we were playing on pace, we were taking care of the ball, we were getting the draw, so we certainly have an example of the time and what is takes to play against the top team in the country, we just have to find a way to remain consistent.”
Matthew McClure is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact, email email@example.com.