The University of Maryland hockey team will look to end it’s losing skid tonight against the Georgetown Hoyas. The Terps have lost five of their last six games. But, morale remains high, and the Terps know they can play better hockey, as they did earlier in the season.
“Everyone is frustrated obviously, but nobody is quitting on the team,” Forward David Greene said. “We have struggled the past few games against strong opponents, but I think we finally started to pull ourselves together in the third period against Rowan, and so far that momentum has carried through the week in practice. We know this team has potential from our performance at the start of the season, and we are working to get back to that level of play and to improve further.”
One problem Maryland has been dealing with over the past few weeks is injuries. Greene has been among those that have suffered from injuries. He had been dealing a torn labrum from last season, but now says he is finally healthy. But, according to Ian Cleary, that isn’t an excuse.
“I feel comfortable with anyone he puts me out there with,” Cleary said. “Everyone on this team is a great hockey player and they know where they should be on the ice so it’s not hard to find and connect with them. “
That positive attitude is why the Terps remain optimistic for the season.
“Everyone has been pretty positive this week in the locker room,” Cleary said. “We know that we are a good team and we know what it’s going to take to get back on track.”
That mindset was evident in practice for the Terps this week. According to Cleary, Head Coach Bill Krampf is running fast-paced practices, which matches the Terps style. They excel at outworking and out-grinding their opponents, working hard along the boards and playing a more north-south style game. Krampf stated after the Rowan loss that the team just needs to focus on sticking to their systems. When they don’t, they surrender many goals, as evident with last weeks 6-2 loss.
One thing that remains consistent is Maryland’s top line, with Lucas Davis, Avery Clair and Jake Friedland. Davis ranks among the top 100 players in points in all of the Mens Division 2 in the ACHA. But in the past few games, Tom Jaquay has quietly emerged as one of Maryland’s top scoring threats. He’s scored five goals and three assists in the past four games. The team is also still getting some offense from the backend. In fact, Brad Lindquist is tied for fourth on the team in assists with six. And while he isn’t known much for his offense, Eddie Martin is leading all Terps defensemen in goals with three, and the Terps hope he scores again….Maryland has never lost a game when Martin scores a goal.
Georgetown is right on Maryland’s tail in the standings. Maryland is ranked 14th in the official ACHA rankings, and Georgetown is just outside the top 15, receiving a few votes in the rankings. But through nine games, they recorded six wins and three losses. They will need to keep their eye on Dan Walsh, who has 20 points in nine games, Chad Heal, who is second in points with 15 in nine games, and Harry Clifford, who leads the team in assists with 10. Last season, the Terps were able to sweep the season series with the Hoyas, but both were very narrow wins.
Tonights game also marks the first opportunity fans will be able to wear Maryland’s new jerseys. The sweaters were shipped out earlier this week, and many fans have already sported them through Twitter and Facebook.
Who? Georgetown vs. Maryland
Where? Herbert Wells
When? 8:00 p.m. tonight
The University of Maryland hockey club fell 6-2 to Rowan in their sole contest this weekend.
Though they defeated the team in September, the Terps looked out of sorts Friday night against a seemingly faster, more aggressive Rowan squad.
The Terps struggled to get out of the neutral and defensive zones for most of the first and second periods. The first Prof goal came about six minutes into the first, from a rebound that sophomore goaltender Tanner MacPhee wasn’t able to control. Weird bounces dominated the night, as Rowan seemed to get more and more chances around the Terrapin net, and tensions seemed to climb higher and higher.
The Rowan offensive onslaught started mid-way through the second period. They tallied a third goal with 12:19 left and a fourth not even a minute later. Possession and defensive pressure looked spotty even after sophomore Sean Ranking replaced MacPhee following the fifth Rowan goal. The Profs made one more, putting the Terps down 6-0, by the end of the second.
“[Relieving] is tough but its something you’ve got to do,” said Ranking. “I just trying to go in there and give our team the best opportunity.”
The Terps picked up the pace – and the aggression – in the third.
“We dominated,” said Head Coach Bill Krampf.
Junior forward Tom Jaquay and sophomore forward Avery Clair both scored to lessen the deficit. The difference between first and second period performance compared to third: systems.
“We picked it up a lot in the third. Down six nothing, playing like crap, the conversation in the lockerroom was one, effort, and two, we weren’t playing Maryland systems,” said Krampf.
His players echoed this sentiment – according to both Rankin and junior forward Casey Meadows the team “didn’t run the systems” that they’d been practicing prior to Friday night.
In the future, the team plans to adhere to the style of play exhibited at fast-paced, well organized games against UMBC and Pitt.
“We’ve just got to keep our heads up, play the way we know how to do it, play Maryland hockey,” said Meadows. “Got to get back to work, hit the gym, go to practice, work on our systems so we have a sure shot of winning next week.”
After a promising start to the season, the University of Maryland hockey team is riding a three game losing streak, but looking to bounce back against the Virginia Tech Hokies and St. Joseph’s University Hawks in back to back games this weekend.
The Terps trip to Philadelphia last week returned unfavorable results, but the team has been working hard to maintain their offensive prowess and lessen chances for the other team to score. In order to do so, the team has implemented a few solutions throughout practice this week.
“We had a couple things that were breaking down last weekend we needed to fix,” said Head Coach Bill Krampf. “You can't continue to give up scoring chances to teams in the MACH and expect to win. We will be better in that area.”
Tonight, the Terps take on the Hokies – a team who handed Maryland two defeats in the 2013-14 season. Virginia Tech currently holds a 4-8-0 record and is lead offensively by forward Alexander Hashimi who has seven goals and five assists in 12 games. Right behind him, and often producing in tandem, are defenseman Alec Burgman and forward Doug MacDonald who have ten and nine points respectively. MacDonald also has a mean streak; the defensemen has an impressive 32 PIMs in 12 games.
The Hokies have four potential goaltenders to choose from, but Saturday’s best bet will be either Walker Detweiler or Tanner Jones .876 and .885 SV% respectively.
The Terps strategy to beat Virginia Tech?
“Outscore them,” said Krampf.
Maryland faced St. Joes earlier in the season and absolutely demolished the then broken team 13-1. It’s been nearly a month since that night but, the St. Joeseph’s team continues to struggle. They are 2-9-0 so far this season and have lost most of their games in a spectacular fashion. In their eleven games, opponents have scored an average of eight goals against the Hawks. Their losses register an average deficit of almost seven goals.
This is not to say that the Hawks won’t be ready; the team is healthier and now has its top players ready to start. Forward Dean Keeney leads the team in points with 20 in 11 games. After Keeney, offensive production really drops off, though according to Krampf, every skater in a non-Maryland jersey is a focus, regardless of statistical domincance.
Expect defensemen Tyler Garcia and Mitchell McIlheny to play with a healthy dose of aggression – the pair both have over 20 penalty minutes on the season. The Hawks will start either Matthew McGarvey or Christopher D’Alessio who have .789 and .821 SV% respectively.
“Coach Walsh will have his guys prepared especially playing in their barn,” said Krampf.
The University of Maryland will take on Virginia Tech tonight at 8 p.m. at Gardens Ice House in Laurel, Md.
The University of Maryland will take on St. Joeseph’s Saturday night at 7 p.m. at Skatium in Haverford, Pa.