Terrapins top JMU by 2-1 in overtime Goal by Armas propels UM into 2nd round of NCAA men's tournament

COLLEGE PARK — COLLEGE PARK -- An open goal. An overtime NCAA tournament game. And a Maryland player who has three goals in 42 career games controls the ball from eight yards out in front of a wave of defenders.

But Steve Armas steered off the pressure and trickled the ball into the left corner of the goal.


Armas' goal 8 1/2 minutes into overtime propelled the No. 9-ranked Terps to a 2-1 triumph over No. 19 James Madison in a first-round NCAA tournament game before a standing-room-only, Ludwig Field-record crowd of 2,333 yesterday.

Maryland (14-5-3), winner of five straight games and 10-1-1 in its past 12, advances to the second round to meet the winner of today's William and Mary-Army matchup. It's the first time in school history that the Terps have won an NCAA tournament game in three consecutive seasons.


"I saw a big purple blob going to one side, and I just placed it to the side they weren't," said Armas, a sophomore midfielder who scored his first career goal in last year's NCAA tournament loss to James Madison. "I just said to myself: 'Keep it low.' "

The Terps dominated early in overtime and had several rushes at the goal. Armas' scoring opportunity came when Pierre Venditti took a lead pass down into the left corner that brought Dukes goalkeeper Barry Purcell out of the goal mouth.

Purcell never could haul in the ball after a sliding attempt and it fTC eventually wound up back on the feet of Venditti, who centered the ball to the front of the goal. After a James Madison defender slightly deflected the pass, Armas settled the ball and scored past the scrambling Dukes.

James Madison (14-5-2) had beaten Maryland three times in two years, including a shootout victory over the Terps in the second round of last year's NCAA tournament and an overtime win during this past regular season.

About finally beating the Dukes, Maryland coach Sasho Cirovski said it felt "great, absolutely great. We made a commitment to go a little further than we had in the tournament. Sure, it's only the first round, but James Madison has been a nemesis for us. We feel we met the demands of the game to beat them."

And there were indeed some demands.

The Terps' top striker, Venditti, saw limited action due to a 102-degree temperature an hour before game time. Throw in four yellow cards and 29 fouls on Maryland and the Terps had troubles finding their rhythm.

It didn't help when the Dukes went ahead 1-0 with just under 18 minutes left in regulation on a Maryland defensive breakdown.


Left unmarked, James Madison defender Kjarri Antonsson headed down a corner kick to teammate Mike Brizendine, who placed the ball into the left corner of the goal.

However, that deficit ignited an offensive push by the Terps as Venditti and R.T. Moore both had shots sail over the crossbar.

Maryland tied the game at 1-1 with 9 1/2 minutes remaining in regulation when Keith Beach crossed a lazily-floating pass to a wide-open Shane Dougherty at the left corner of the goal. With Purcell charging over, Dougherty flicked the ball off his head into the upper corner.

"There was a sense of urgency after they scored," said Dougherty, who extended his goal-scoring streak to five games. "But I never gave up on this team."

Pub Date: 11/24/96