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Maryland keeps rolling in ACC, beats Clemson 4-1

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Junior Hayley Brock scored a second half brace to lead Maryland over Clemson 4-1 in ACC play at Ludwig Field. With the win, Maryland improves to 2-0 in conference play for the first time since 1997. Clemson meanwhile drops to 0-2 in conference.

Maryland got on the scoreboard in the 5th minute off a goal by midfielder Becky Kaplan.  Midfielder Olivia Wagner intercepted a Clemson pass and sent the ball forward to Kaplan.  Kaplan then beat three defenders to get the ball.

Clemson had ample opportunity to equalize early on as they held possession in their offensive half of the field for a period of time. Clemson also managed to earn a quick succession of corner kicks soon after Kaplan’s goal, but Maryland’s defense remained firm.

Senior Danielle Hubka doubled the Terrapins’ lead in the 18th minute off a give and go from midfielder Ashley Spivey. Hubka’s shot came from the about 18 yards out.

At the end of the first half, each side had a comparable number of shots. Maryland had recorded eight, while Clemson recorded six.  Maryland’s chances, however, were more dangerous.  A number of Maryland’s chances came off breakaway or advantage situations.

Clemson had a good opportunity early in the second half. In the 49th minute, forward Tabitha Padgett played the ball across the mouth of the goal, out of reach of Maryland Goalkeeper Rachelle Beanlands and defender Shade Pratt. The ball went just wide left and there were no Tigers positioned on that side of the goal.

Forward Hayley Brock further extended the Terrapins lead in the 73rd minute.  Kaplan made a run down the right side and sent a cross in toward Hayley Brock, who then sent the ball in towards the left post beyond the reach of the goalkeeper.

Clemson answered two minutes later when defender Savannah Coiner scored on a free kick from about 35 yards out.

But Brock scored the final goal of the match one minute later. Brock’s second goal was the result of a corner kick that Clemson failed to clear. Forward Gabby Galanti sent to ball to Wagner who sent a volley in from the top of the box. Brock then headed the ball in to give Maryland the 4-1 advantage.

Credit for the Terrapins victory must be given to their defense. Beanlands recorded seven saves for the Terrapins while Clemson’s goalkeepers Hunter Rittgers and Sydney Branson both failed to record a save.

After the game, Maryland Head Coach Jonathan Morgan said that he was pleased with his team’s performance.

“We’ve been talking  (in practice) about being able to get through Sunday, being stronger, grinding and finding a way to win,” he said. “Today we did that.”

But Morgan still feels like his team has room to improve.

“We have a lot more to show out there. I think we can be better, honestly.”

Morgan pointed to his team’s tough upcoming games as opportunities to improve. Maryland will face two 2011 Final Four teams, Duke and Wake Forest, on the road this week.

Clemson meanwhile will look for its first conference win when they play Virginia on Thursday at home.

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