Four times on Friday, Gordon Wild aimed for goal.
The star Maryland men's soccer forward missed the target each time, sometimes covering his face with his hands after the misfires or raising his hand to apologize for the wasted opportunities.
Wild wasn't the only Maryland player struggling, though. The Terps failed to register a shot on goal in their scoreless tie with No. 4 Indiana, one of the team's worst offensive performances in recent memory.
"Today was the first time all year that our midfield and forwards were not connected," Maryland coach Sasho Cirovski said, "both in defending and attack."
It was a surprising lack of production from the attack, which was expected to be the strength of this year's team and had delivered on those expectations early in the season.
Last year, the Terps had the second-best scoring offense in the nation, led by Wild's 17 goals. All but one of that team's starting forwards and midfielders returned this year; the lone graduating senior from that group, Cody Albrecht, was a defensive midfielder.
"We're improving every game," forward DJ Reeves said after Maryland's 1-0 win over Cal Poly on Sep. 4. "It's a process."
The Terps scored four goals in their season opener at Santa Clara, two against Hofstra and three in their overtime win against UCLA.
Against Cal Poly, the Mustangs' ultra-defensive tactics prevented Maryland from scoring more than once. But the Terps' attack — and team as a whole — was still generally pleased with its play through the nonconference schedule.
"Up to this point, we have been making strides," defender George Campbell said. "[But] we took a little bit of a step back today."
Cirovski said entering Friday, he saw no indication of the troubles his team ran into against the Hoosiers.
"We were confident," goalkeeper Dayne St. Clair said. "We had a good week of training."
But the Terps struggled to advance the ball out of their defensive third with any consistency against the Hoosiers.
Maryland took two shots before halftime, its least productive half of the season, and managed just one attempt in the 20 minutes of overtime — a last-second shot from Wild at the end of the first extra period that missed high. The Hoosiers outshot Maryland, 14-7.
"[Cirovski] thought we were ready for it, and they kind of took it to us," Campbell said. "We didn't really match their work rate and just [their] performance in general."
The Terps said the Hoosiers were stronger getting to second balls, though St. Clair said the team noticed Indiana's emphasis on second balls while watching film before the game.
"You have to credit the IU team," Cirovski said, "and you have to take some responsibility, for maybe our preparation, maybe our tactics."
The team was adamant it would take the positives from the game — most notably, a clean sheet from the unproven backline despite being under constant pressure — and build on them moving forward into the Big Ten season.
Plus, as Cirovski pointed out, there are worse outcomes than a tie in a rivalry game against the No. 4 team in the country.
"Look, our standards are really high," Cirovski said. "This probably wasn't as bad as I think it was. But I'm still disappointed that we couldn't create [more] opportunities against them."