Maryland wins, will face Notre Dame in NCAA soccer final

Maryland players (from left) Dan Metzger, Patrick Mullins, and Suli Dainkeh celebrate after defeating Virginia, 2-1, at PPL Park in Chester on Friday. The Terrapins advanced to face Notre Dame in the College Cup final on Sunday. More, D2.             CHARLES FOX / Staff
Maryland players (from left) Dan Metzger, Patrick Mullins, and Suli Dainkeh celebrate after defeating Virginia, 2-1, at PPL Park in Chester on Friday. The Terrapins advanced to face Notre Dame in the College Cup final on Sunday. More, D2.             CHARLES FOX / Staff
Posted: December 15, 2013

It's a formula that has produced staggering success during the last four seasons for Maryland's soccer team. When senior Patrick Mullins scores at least one goal, the Terrapins usually win.

Mullins scored twice as Maryland defeated rival Virginia, 2-1, in Friday's NCAA tournament semifinal at PPL Park.

The fifth-seeded Terrapins (17-3-5) will meet ACC foe Notre Dame in the College Cup championship at 3 p.m. Sunday.

No. 8 Virginia ended its season at 13-6-5.

Mullins has 46 career goals at Maryland, which is second on the school's all-time list. When he has scored, the Terps are 32-1-5.

"Patrick is a special player," Maryland coach Sacho Cirovski said. "I think he was dominant tonight, very good on both sides of the ball."

Mullins' first goal came in the 11th minute. Starting the play was Mikias Eticha, who sent Mullins on goal with a long pass from midfield.

Mullins ran down the ball and right before the box chipped it over charging goalie Calle Brown.

In the 49th minute, one Union youth academy product almost scored on another.

Virginia's Darius Madison (La Salle High), sent a blast from inside the box that was deflected by Maryland keeper Zack Steffen (Downingtown West), going under his arm and hitting the post.

"The ball was bouncing," Steffen said, "and he hit it well, and it was knuckling a little bit and it hit the bottom of my palm and I looked up and luckily it hit the post. It was a nice shot."

Mullins gave the Terps a 2-0 lead with his second goal in the 76th minute. Tsubasa Endoh sent Mullins on goal with a long service. Mullins one-timed a bouncing ball from 12 yards out.

"Tonight I got two great services and made sure to put them away," he said.

Virginia quickly struck back when Marcus Salandy-Defour earned a penalty kick after being taken down inside the box.

Teammate Todd Wharton converted the penalty kick in the 77th minute.

Steffen preserved the win with an outstanding diving save in the 88th minute on a shot inside the box from Brian James.


mnarducci@phillynews.com

@sjnard

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