After having to suffer from early NCAA Tournament exits the past two seasons, the University of Maryland Men’s Soccer team got to taste glory on Sunday evening as the concluded a sensational tournament run.
The Terrapins rode a stifling defense in the tournament, and capped off their fifth consecutive shutout as they downed Akron 1-0 in Santa Barbara in the 2018 College Cup.
Following a scoreless first-half, Maryland got the lone goal of the match through senior midfielder Amar Sejdic. Akron’s Colin Biros unintentionally kicked Maryland’s Johannes Bergmann in the face while trying to clear a ball in the box, which allowed the spot kick. Sejdic slotted home from the penalty spot in the 57th minute, which proved to be the winning goal.
Maryland easily could’ve added to their lead in the 76th minute when Sejdic stepped up again from the penalty spot. However, Akron keeper Ben Lundt was able to make the save to give the Zips a slight chance.
However, Carlo Ritaccio was sent off for Akron in the 81st minute after a foul on DJ Reeves, which reduced the team’s chances.
It was Maryland’s fourth National Championship, and their first since 2008 under head coach Sasho Cirovski. Junior goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair posted the shutout, keeping two saves in the slim victory.
Maryland finishes the season with a 13-6-4 record while Akron ended 15-7-2.