ESPN analyst Paul Carcaterra was the sideline reporter for unseeded Maryland’s 11-5 stunner against No. 2 seed Johns Hopkins on Saturday. On Monday, he offered what he liked and what he didn’t like in the Terps’ victory in the NCAA tournament’s quarterfinal round.
Wednesday feature Carcaterra’s assessment of No. 1 seed Loyola’s 10-9 decision against unseeded Denver, but here is what he thought of Maryland’s win.
What Carcaterra liked: “I liked the way that they really initiated the offense from the midfield – not only from up top, but also from behind. And I thought they were very, very good at finding the weaknesses in the Johns Hopkins defense. I really liked the first midfield. I thought [senior] Drew Snider, [redshirt sophomore] Mike Chanenchuk and [junior] John Haus were superb. They owned their one-on-one matchups and really found seams in the Hopkins defense from a dodging standpoint. Those are three guys who can break a defense down and put a lot of pressure on you. That forces teams not only to defend Maryland differently from the midfield, but they also need to start to think whether they need to double-pole that unit and take a long stick off one of their attackmen because they’re that dangerous. I think Mike Chanenchuk is finding his stride after being injured for most of the season. John Haus and Drew Snider have been steady from the beginning of the season. So that’s a unit that I really, really liked. I also liked the play of [redshirt sophomore goalkeeper] Niko Amato. I thought he was charged and really into the game.”
What he didn’t like: “At times, they really slowed the ball down without an attack mode in mind. There were times when they took their time and then they struck really fast and were difficult to defend. But then there were times when they kind of worked the clock for the sake of working the clock. They had stall warnings as early as the first quarter. Look, I respect that they’re playing whatever pace it takes to win because at this point, if you win the national championship, no one in 10 years is going to say that you had 13 stall warnings in a quarterfinal. No one cares. You won. I’m not questioning what [coach] John Tillman’s doing. He’s in the Final Four. Every other coach in the country that wants to criticize him probably isn’t.”