Posted: October 9, 2007
COLLEGE PARK, Md. – The Mountain Hawks fell to the Maryland Terrapins 2-1 in front of a raucous crowd in College Park, Md. Tuesday night. Jim Taranto scored the lone goal for Lehigh in the 80th minute, but it wasn’t enough as the Mountain Hawks fall to 5-3-2 on the season and the Terrapins improve to 5-4-2. The winning goal came on a penalty kick by Maryland’s Jeremy Hall at the 83:31 mark of the match.
“I thought that we did what we asked them to do in the second half,” said head coach Dean Koski, “which was to work better as a team and to move the ball and to go after them.”
Taranto tried to get the Mountain Hawks on the board early in the first half, with a scoring attempt in the third minute, but his shot sailed just over the net to keep the game scoreless. The Terrapins would not wait long to respond, however. Just two minutes later Maryland took its first corner of the half as Sean Flatley headed the ball just wide of the net for the Terps first shot.
Maryland would go on the offensive for the next 30 minutes of the half, out shooting Lehigh 7-0 in the time span and taking eight corner kicks, while the Mountain Hawks did not record any. Brian Lee did his best to keep the Brown and White in the game making a couple of key plays on corners, including a great save on a point blank shot from Hall.
The Terrapins would strike first in the 31st on a goal from Drew Yates. Rich Costanzo set up the shot with a lob pass that would bounce right in front of Yates. The sophomore took advantage of the bounce as he chipped the shot over the head of Lee for his team leading sixth goal of the season.
The Mountain Hawks seemed to have a sense of urgency after the goal and started to pressure the Maryland defense. In the 34th minute Taranto threaded a pass through two Maryland defenders to Kyle Evans, however, Evans was just a step offside and the threat was put to an end.
To start the second half Maryland would go into a defensive mode trying to hold onto the 1-0 lead. The Mountain Hawks would not stand around and allow the game to end as they were able to tie the game in the 80th minute. Taranto and Mike Hessemer entered the offensive zone with just two defenders in front of them. Taranto passed the ball to Hessemer near the sideline and Hessemer passed it back to Taranto, who made a sliding kick at the ball to put it pass Maryland goalkeeper Thorne Holder.
Less than a minute later Lehigh nearly took the lead on a header by Jesse Schram. Schram took a header just feet in front of Holder, however, the keeper was able to hold onto the ball to keep the game tied.
Controversy arose in the 84th minute when Maryland midfielder Steven King was taken down in the box on a close call. The call resulted in a penalty kick for the Terrapins, which Hall put past Lee for the eventual game winner.
“To get a call like that late in a competitive game,” said Koski, “that was a dubious call in favor of Maryland and I feel badly for our players because they deserved to win that game. You don’t make those calls in a tight match particularly when the player’s on the edge of the box.”
Maryland out shot the Mountain Hawks 16-6 in the game and took 16 corner kicks to Lehigh’s one. Lee made five saves in the net for the Brown and White, while his counterpart Holder stopped two shots to earn the win.
Lehigh returns to action on Saturday when the Mountain Hawks travel to Worcester, Mass. to take on the Holy Cross Crusaders in Patriot League action starting at 7 p.m.