Women's Lacrosse

‘I still keep laughing when people call it a rivalry,’ Syracuse blown out by Maryland again, 17-7

Daily Orange File Photo

Syracuse has simply never been able to beat the powerhouse that made Gary Gait.

Syracuse saw its seven-game win streak snapped at the hands of the Maryland in College Park on Saturday afternoon, and SU head coach Gary Gait, a former UMD assistant coach, still has only one win against the Terrapins since his career at SU began in 2007.

Gait spoke earlier this week about his struggles against Maryland throughout his tenure at SU. Gait said that he looks forward to going back to UMD every year, despite the Orange’s failure to succeed against the Terrapins in a long time.

Five years, to be exact.

With a 10-point loss Saturday afternoon, No. 4 SU’s streak of disappointments against No. 1 UMD continued. The Orange (7-1, 2-0 Atlantic Coast) is now 1-21 all-time against the Terrapins (6-0), and followed its 19-9 loss against UMD on May 27 of last year with another double-digit loss Saturday, 17-7.

“I still keep laughing when people call it a rivalry,” Gait said. “It’s more a domination. We’ve got to start winning some of these games; I don’t think Maryland wouldn’t consider this a rivalry at all.”

The Orange tallied 31 shots Saturday, and UMD countered with 32 shots of their own, but the difference between the two sides came in efficiency. UMD converted 53 percent of its shots, while SU converted only 23 percent.

Terrapin goalie Megan Taylor was a wall in the net for UMD, allowing just seven SU goals on 18 saves, a career-high for the 2016 Big Ten Goaltender of the year. She is 27-1 in her career as UMD’s starting goaltender, and her only loss in the net came in last season’s national championship game against North Carolina.

“She was seeing the ball really well, and they were pressuring all of our shots,” Gait said. “She played great, and they deserved to win.”

SU’s physical defense proved to be a problem for the Terrapins, as the Orange forced 20 turnovers over the course of the contest. Though SU led the turnover margin, it struggled to convert its successful defense into productive offense.

Natalie Wallon and Neena Merola had two goals each for SU, but were the only Orange players to score more than once. The Orange also lost out on the draw control margin, winning only 46 percent of the draw controls to UMD’s 64 percent.

“I think that if we actually put it together, we can beat anybody,” Gait said. “Most teams don’t get that many shots against Maryland, and that’s a positive that we can work on.”

Freshman goalie Asa Goldstock got her first career taste of the UMD’s offense and struggled in the net, posting a save percentage of only 35 percent. Saturday marked Goldstock’s second-straight game with a sub-40 percent save percentage, but Gait said that her second half against UMD was much better than her first as she settled into the game.

Maryland is the most decorated team SU has played this season, receiving all 20 No. 1 votes in this week’s IWLCA coaches poll, and all 21 No. 1 votes in this week’s Insider Media poll.

“We didn’t put it all together at once at the same time,” Gait said. “It just put us in the hole, and made it difficult for us to dig out.”

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