Once the eight-goal scoring madness at the College Cup had ended and Georgetown goalie Tomas Gomez batted away the final penalty kick, there was one last sprint to make.
This was how Sasho Cirovski and Taylor Kemp wanted it. The longtime Maryland soccer coach and one of his program's anchors sat side by side Saturday, savoring their first trip to the College Cup together.
Maryland (20-1-2) will advance to the College Cup in Hoover, Ala., for the first time since 2008 when it won the national championship. The Terps will face the Georgetown Hoyas, who defeated the University of San Diego 3-1 earlier in the day to advance to the round of four.
Sasho Cirovski dreamed big when he took over Maryland's soccer program nearly two decades ago.
There's humbleness to Graham Zusi that belies his artistry. On the field, he is respected as a risk-taker, as an author of visionary passing and stunning strikes. But off it, he's calm. He's calculated. Never high, never low.
Maryland's last College Cup appearance was its 2008 national title, which is hardly an eternity. For a program that's reached the national semifinals six times between 1998 and 2008, though, it's a noticeable drought.
For Maurice Edu and Clarence Goodson of the U.S. national team, Monday's training session at Ludwig Field was a throwback, a return to the University of Maryland stomping grounds they once roamed before representing their country at the pinnacle of their sport.
Will Swaim's career probably had not unfolded as he'd imagined it would when he was Maryland's starting goalkeeper as a freshman.
When D.C. United midfielder Domenic Mediate suffered a fracture in his right leg in August in a game against the Los Angeles Galaxy, he wondered whether he ever would play again.