PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- The third-seeded Maryland field hockey team claimed its second national championship with a 2-1 victory on penalty strokes over second-seeded North Carolina before 1,773 at Rutgers University yesterday.
Maryland (22-3) won its first NCAA title, also 2-1 over North Carolina, in 1987, the Terps' only other appearance in the title game.
Yesterday's game ended in a 1-1 tie and remained tied through two 15-minute sudden-death overtime periods.
On penalty strokes, Maryland sophomore goalkeeper Irene Horvat stopped all three Tar Heels attempts.
"I just saw the ball and nothing else," Horvat said.
The Terps, who won 16 of their last 17 games, found the net on their first three strokes, by juniors Maureen Scott and Laura Harmon and senior Tara Everly.
"I was 100 percent confident our strokes would score, and I was very confident in our goalkeeper, Irene Horvat," said Missy Meharg, who won her first title as Terps coach.
Maryland opened the scoring with an unassisted goal by Sabrina Salam at the 26:43 mark. Jennifer Blizzard scored seven minutes later for North Carolina (16-3-3) to tie the game.
The Terps' Harmon, Salam, Horvat, Shannon Petrick and Amy Schubert were named to the all-tournament team.