Last weekend’s match versus Northwestern proved to be as tough as expected. A dominating performance on offense encouraged the Ohio State women’s soccer team this past week, ahead of Thursday’s 7 p.m. game against the Maryland Terrapins.
After finishing tied at 0-0 against Northwestern, the Buckeyes have looked past their disappointment in the inability to score a goal after having 28 total shots and 17 corner kicks.
“Obviously we were pretty frustrated after the Northwestern game because we really felt we had the ball on their attacking half most of the time,” said senior forward Lindsay Agnew. “I think our response has just been really good. This week in training we’ve been really working on finishing.”
OSU, now 7-4-2 (1-2-2 Big Ten), travels to College Park, Maryland to face off against a team struggling in conference play. Maryland is 3-9-1 on the year (1-4-0 Big Ten).
Agnew praised the attack and their ability to put the ball in a scoring position, while also emphasizing the focus on finishing, ultimately resulting in a score. Another point was carrying over the dominant play from the Northwestern bout, continuing strong attacks on the Maryland defense.
“We really want to work to combine with our forwards and (midfielders) to get behind (Maryland’s) defense and expose them behind their back line,” Agnew said.
The Maryland offense presents a challenge to the Buckeyes. Junior forward Chelsea Jackson and sophomore forward Jarena Harmon both pose a potent threat to OSU’s back-line defenders, scoring nine goals and eight goals, respectively.
Redshirt senior defender and forward Morgan Wolcott said the team has a plan in place to defend the attacking Terrapin duo.
“There is a block in our defense to keep teams out of the central area,” Wolcott said. “Having (our) numbers around that area helps out.”
Maryland averages nearly 10 shots per game, a number the Buckeyes top with an average around 12. The Terrapins rotate several players in their lineup, which adds another element for the Buckeyes to prepare for.
“We noticed that (Maryland) are very versatile, and they try a lot of different players in a lot of different spots,” Agnew said. “Being prepared for different styles of play and different players in their back line, I think that’s our main focus.”
The Buckeyes are taking games one at a time, focusing on the individual performances, scoring and winning crucial Big Ten games. There is a short turnaround after the match in Maryland; OSU will travel to West Lafayette, Indiana, to face the Purdue Boilermakers on Sunday at 1 p.m. Purdue is 3-8-0, 1-4-0 in Big Ten play.