Terps start season with 18-7 win

February 27, 1994|By Paul McMullen | Paul McMullen,Sun Staff Writer

COLLEGE PARK -- Maryland opened its lacrosse season yesterday with an 18-7 whipping of Villanova. A couple hundred wind-chilled spectators watched at the Terps' AstroTurf facility.

The season will conclude Memorial Day weekend a quarter-mile away at Byrd Stadium, where crowds exceeding 20,000 will attend the Final Four. After Dick Edell successfully started his second decade in charge of the Terps, the question was posed: What does Maryland have to do to participate in the championship it will be host to in May?

"All the new kids in the midfield have to assume significant roles," said Edell, who began his 22nd college season with his 196th victory. "We're going to have to spread things around on offense, because we don't have a superstar on attack. Brian Dougherty's doing a nice job in the goal. Sometimes he's too laid back for me, but that's his style.

"We scrimmaged Delaware last Saturday and Georgetown on Tuesday," Edell said. "Three games in eight days will tire you out, but I wish we had eight games in eight days. We need the work."

The Terps have enough weapons to return to the 12-team NCAA tournament field for the fourth straight year, but Edell knows they'll have to improve in all phases to break up the foursome of defending champion Syracuse, 1992 winner Princeton, North Carolina and Johns Hopkins. They comprised the Final Four the past two seasons.

Maryland was last there in 1991, when All-American defensemen and four-year starters Steve Hayes and Danny Robbins were freshman starters. They take directions from Dougherty, a sophomore who didn't become the starter in goal until the ninth game of the 1993 season. He had 13 saves yesterday, quelling Villanova's slim upset hopes.

Four of the top six midfielders from last year are gone, and three recruits from Essex Community College helped Maryland rebuild there. Kip Fulks, Chris Farmer (Loyola High) and James Carver (Calvert Hall) helped Essex reach the national junior college title game last spring.

Rob Chomo, whom Edell says is one of the best feeders in the game, had a team-high 16 assists and 29 points last year. Chomo, one of five St. Mary's High products at Maryland, left with five minutes remaining in the first half with a laceration on the small finger of his left hand that required five stitches. He expects to play at Duke next Saturday.

Villanova led 2-1 after five minutes, before the Terps went on a 7-1 run. The Wildcats limited Maryland to one goal in the first 10 minutes after Chomo left and rallied to within 11-7, but the Terps responded with the last seven goals.

Chomo scored twice in 25 minutes, but he had no assists. Mike Bordi, a junior from Dix Hills, N.Y., who had four goals and seven assists over the past two seasons, has emerged as another feeder. He had a goal and four assists yesterday.

Junior midfielder Greg Nelin led Maryland with four goals, and midfielder Mike Crawford and attackman Matt Parks had two apiece.

Villanova's top attackman, Rick Bontatibus, was held without a point in the first 33 minutes. Other than a pair of scrimmages, the Wildcats had only practiced outside six times, but their conditions are better than some. Villanova is scheduled to play at Towson State next Saturday, but the game could be shifted from soggy Minnegan Stadium to the Wildcats' artificial turf in Philadelphia.

Villanova 3 2 2 0 -- 7

Maryland 6 4 4 4 -- 18

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