Johns Hopkins won on the field yesterday in the NCAA lacrosse tournament, defeating Notre Dame, 15-7, but lost its off-the-field battle with Towson State.
Hopkins athletic director Bob Scott and Blue Jays coach Tony Seaman both tried to persuade Towson State athletic director Bill Hunter to play Saturday's NCAA quarterfinal game at Towson's Minnegan Stadium during the day. But Hunter wanted the game at night (8 p.m.) and the NCAA gave the fourth-seeded Tigers the OK to play at night against the fifth-seeded Blue Jays.
Towson wanted the game at night because it plays a lot of home games at night, and it didn't want to go head-to-head with Saturday afternoon's Preakness. Scott countered, saying that lacrosse is traditionally played in the afternoon -- including all of Hopkins' home games -- and most lacrosse fans would not be attending the Preakness.
Scott and Seaman were both upset yesterday with the NCAA decision.
"We drew 12,000 fans for our homecoming games against Maryland, which were played on Preakness Days," said Scott. "The NCAA lacrosse tournament rules state that if both schools do not mutually agree on the starting time of a game, the chairman of the men's lacrosse committee [Dave Urick, Georgetown coach] should determine the starting time. So it's obvious Dave decided in their favor."
Seaman said: "I watched nine players fall down playing on the grass at night at Byrd Stadium last night [Saturday night in opening round Maryland-Duke game] and I'd hate to see this game determined by a Towson State or a Hopkins player falling down. Also, this is the first time I can remember the starting time of a game determined before the two participants were actually determined."
Scott was informed of the NCAA decision before yesterday's victory over Notre Dame.
Hopkins ran its usual controlled offense most of the game and got 10 goals and five assists from Adam Wright (four goals), Jeff Wills (three goals, three assists) and Terry Riordan (three goals, two assists).
But goalkeeper Scott Giardina was the real Hopkins star, making 21 saves, including 11 in the second quarter when Notre Dame was trying to make a game of it.
"Give Giardina credit," said Notre Dame coach Kevin Corrigan. "It could have been a 7-4 game at halftime if it hadn't been for him. We got the pace [slow] of the game we wanted, but he was unbelievable at times. We didn't want to get into a running game with them because they are deeper than us and they have a lot of talent."