Saturday, September 12, 2009

Better and Better

I can't be bothered to show up to any game on time. Twenty-five minutes late to tonight's Maryland's ACC opener and I didn't get to watch much of the match while chasing my daughter around Ludwig.

Charlie Davies'
alma mater might be facing a tough season. Before tonight, BC has dropped two of three games, losing to Harvard and Rhode Island.

From what little I saw of the game, however, the Eagles are not as bad as their record would suggest. BC's freshman keeper, Justin Luthy, is not bad; nor were fellow freshmen Kevin Mejia; Sacir Hot; Isaac Taylor; Kyle Bekker; Colin Murphy; Stefan Carter; and Charlie Rugg. For those keeping track, seven of BC's starting XI are freshmen.

Having BC early on the schedule may have been good luck for Maryland. But, it might just as easily be argued that getting Maryland scheduled early is good luck, because Maryland is also getting better every game. There seems to be an inverse relationship between attendance and performance on the pitch -- numbers dropped 45% between the first and second game and 31% between the second and third game and the team's confidence seems to have grown by an equal amount.

Starting winger Karou Forbess was in the stands at RFK to check out former teammates Rodney Wallace and Graham Zusi on Wednesday night and I don't think one is going too far out on limb by predicting that several current Terps will build professional careers as well. The second goal tonight was something that has been building and will likely be repeated several times this year: a corner kick of the foot of Matt Kassel with the ball put in goal off the head of center back Kevin Tangney.

At the moment, Maryland's defense is doing double duty: shutting down the opposing team's offense (Maryland had 23 shots on goal, BC managed 9), threatening to score on set pieces in the final third, and Taylor Kemp marauding at left back. A word about Kemp: he is fun to watch and has proved, to open the season, to be an able replacement for Rodney Wallace. And another word about Ethan White: he is exceptionally strong in the middle. Forwards slide off of him and he plays with incredible confidence in the goal box.

Outside of the defense, I enjoyed getting a chance to see Kwame Darko and London Woodberry in the midfield. Both made the most of limited opportunities and perhaps they will have a chance to build on that performance against Duquesne on Tuesday night.

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