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Field Hockey takes down No. 5 Maryland on the road

A field hockey player wearing a white jersey jumps celebrating with a stick. Players also wearing white jerseys celebrate in the background.

First-year defender Ottilie Sykes scores winning goal with 34 seconds left to defeat No. 5 Maryland 32.

Photo Courtesy of @TigerFH/Twitter.

Princeton Women’s Field Hockey (2–4 overall, 0–0 Ivy) went on the road with a vengeance to face the No. 5 Maryland Terrapins (6–2, 0–0 Big 10). With only 28 seconds left in the game, the Tigers scored to win 3–2, defeating the Terrapins, notorious for being a field hockey powerhouse.  

Games between the Tigers and Terrapins have historically been tightly contested, with their last five matchups ending in a one-goal scenario in overtime. In their last meeting in the Fall 2022, Princeton lost 4–3. Heading into the Maryland game, the Tigers had fought through three consecutive overtimes.


Princeton took the field with energy, and both teams were able to keep the ball out of the net for the first quarter, building tension leading into the second half. Senior goalie Robyn Thompson kept the Terrapins frustrated, with a near career-high of nine saves.

Despite the Terrapins driving more shots than the Tigers, it was senior defender Sam Davidson who scored first off of a penalty shot, making it her tenth straight made penalty shot and holding her astounding career record of 100 percent of penalty strokes made.

Princeton was then able to draw a corner, taken by first-year defender Ottilie Sykes, and converted by the other half of the first-year duo, forward Merle Broex, for her first career goal.

With Princeton up 2–0, it was the first time all season that the Tigers maintained a lead of greater than one, and the Tigers felt the momentum of the game on their side despite being the underdogs on the road. Maryland made sure to get on the board in the first half, and, with one minute left, the Terrapins drilled one in, closing the half with a score of 2–1.

The Tigers took the field for the second half with confidence, and the defense did not disappoint. The Tigers kept it tight throughout the game, with junior defender Aimee Jungfer making game-changing stops. Four minutes into the first half, Maryland knocked in another, tying the game. Luckily, the Tigers have a lot of experience with high-pressure situations, especially with this Maryland team.

The score remained tied through the third quarter and most of the fourth, and the game intensified even further in the last three minutes. Princeton alum Sammy Popper, who was playing for the Tigers against the Terrapins just last fall, wore Maryland red on Thursday, playing for the Terrapins with her fifth year of eligibility. Popper did not hesitate to send her best shot to ex-teammate Thompson, who made a jaw-dropping save to keep the score tied with just over two minutes left. Thompson, who was escorted off of the field in an ambulance during the previous game after an injury, rallied the Tigers to finish strong.


Sykes, with an assist from Davidson, sealed the Tiger win with only 28 seconds left in the game, lighting up Princeton fans and players after taking down the Terps for a massive Tiger victory.

The Tiger's next opponent was UConn, who they fell to 1–3 at home on Sunday, Sept. 17. 

Evelyn Walsh is a staff writer for the Sports section at the ‘Prince.’

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