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No. 7 Maryland Tops Men's Soccer, 3-0

Sept. 14, 2010

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BALTIMORE - A gutsy performance from the Loyola University Maryland men's soccer team was not enough to hold off seventh-ranked Maryland, as the Terrapins toppled the Greyhounds Tuesday night at the Ridley Athletic Complex, 3-0.

Loyola (1-2-1) knew it would face a battle against Maryland (2-1-1), as the Terrapins entered the game with a new No. 7 ranking in the NSCAA/HendricksCars.com National Rankings that were released today. Maryland improved two spots thanks to a 1-1 tie against then-No. 5 Boston College on Friday night.

"We'd like to thank Maryland and their head coach Sasho Cirovski for bringing the team up here, it was a classy thing to do," said Head Coach Mark Mettrick. "Maryland is an excellent side and they were clinical tonight. We had some good moments in the game and created some good chances that did not fall our way. I thought our team battled hard  tonight and it was a very good test for our team against one of the best teams in the country."

The two teams played in front of 2,090 fans, marking the largest-ever soccer crowd in the young history of the Ridley Athletic Complex.

Phil Bannister ( Wallsend, England/Monkseaton ) led Loyola with three shots. Bannister and Kevin Curran (Upper Township, N.J./Ocean City) each recorded a shot on goal.

Loyola spent much of the first half looking for opportunities as the team tried to break through the Maryland back line. The Greyhounds began to have success midway through the period, creating scoring chances and setting up corner kicks.

The home side saw its first breakthrough in the 23rd minute, when Danny Ankrah ( Gaithersburg, Md./Watkins Mill ) attempted to convert from two quick passes from Phil Bannister and Wade McHugh. Unfortunately for the Greyhounds, Ankrah pushed the shot high and the team continued to look for more chances.

The Greyhounds found one of their best chances of the half when they recorded their first shot on goal in the game's 28th minute. Phil Bannister took a feed from an Eddie Dines throw-in and volleyed a hard shot from in close, but Maryland goalkeeper Zac MacMath proved equal to the attempt and held on for the save.

Maryland took eight shots in the first half and would finally convert in the 39th minute. Patrick Mullins took a chance from a sharp angle inside the Loyola penalty area and the ball ricocheted off of a Greyhound defender, finding its way into the extreme left side of net for a goal. The Terrapins then led 1-0, an advantage they would take into the halftime break.

Loyola came out of halftime looking for an equalizer and nearly scored one three minutes into the period. Eddie Dines ( Newcastle Upon Tyne, England/Monkseaton ) streaked up the middle of the Maryland half and sent a ball to Phil Bannister on a give-and-go, then received Bannister's pass in front of the penalty area and launched a rocket that veered right. The score remained 1-0, Maryland.

The Greyhounds continued to press the Terrapin defense, drawing a free kick from just outside the box. Unfortunately for the home side, Loyola could not convert.

Despite a solid performance from the Loyola back line, Maryland would find another goal in the 62nd minute. Doug Rodkey floated a cross from the top right of the penalty area that Patrick Mullins met in the air with a header, knocking the ball into the middle of the net to push the Terrapin lead to 2-0.

Maryland added an insurance goal with another header for a score in the 74th minute. London Woodberry sent in a cross from the far right side of the field that found the head of Matt Oduaran, who converted from nine yards out for the third and final goal, 3-0.

"This early in the season, we will take some things out of a match like this and evolve as a team," said Mettrick.

Loyola next heads to Towson for a cross-town match with the Tigers on Sunday, September 19. Kick-off is slated for 1 p.m. Loyola will return home on Wednesday when it meets UMBC in a men's-women's doubleheader with the women's game starting at 5 p.m.