Inspired Loyola deflates Towson

Tigers' playoff hopes dimmed with 15-7 loss

March 31, 2002|By Jeff Zrebiec | Jeff Zrebiec,SUN STAFF

It was supposed to be the Towson men's lacrosse team that needed this game. The Tigers were the ones playing for their NCAA lives.

But from the opening faceoff, it was Loyola that appeared to be more motivated.

And that was reflected on the scoreboard, as the third-ranked Greyhounds dominated the eighth-ranked Tigers, 15-7, yesterday in a Colonial Athletic Association game before 2,054 fans at Minnegan Stadium.

Junior goalie Mark Bloomquist, who dislocated a finger in practice on Thursday, was spectacular in making 18 saves for the Greyhounds, and a Loyola offense, which has sputtered at times this year, got a huge lift from a couple of freshmen and the usual gutty performance from senior Michael Sullivan.

The victory went a long way for the Greyhounds in erasing the memories of a 19-14 home defeat to the Tigers last year.

"I'll tell you what, every day this week we heard about them putting 19 on us, and that stung," said Sullivan, who scored three goals and had an assist, despite playing once again with a serious knee injury that has kept him out of practice all season.

"I am just glad we came out here and played well."

In the process of taking a huge step toward an NCAA tournament at-large bid, the Greyhounds (7-0, 4-0) might have knocked out their most bitter rival.

"This was a real tough loss for us as far as playoffs are concerned, but I don't think that matters at all," said Towson coach Tony Seaman, whose team fell to 3-3 overall, 1-1 in the CAA. "It was a real beating. They beat us at every phase of the game today."

Junior attack Chris Summers (St. Mary's) had two goals and three assists, sophomore Stephen Brundage had two goals and two assists and freshman Grant Halford (St. Paul's) had three goals to lead Loyola.

The Greyhounds trailed just once, 2-1, 4:30 into the game, but rattled off five straight goals to take a 6-2 lead.

Towson, in its only offensive surge of the day, would cut it to 6-5, thanks to two goals from Peyton Chane and one from Brad Reppert. But the rest of the half, and the game for that matter, belonged to the Greyhounds, who grounded the Tigers' run-and-fun offense.

Freshman Parker Adams scored to make it 7-5, and less then a minute later at the 7:22 mark of the second quarter, Sullivan ripped a shot past sophomore goalie John Hunt, who was pulled in favor of Reed Sothoron with about five minutes left until intermission.

Halford and Brundage scored back-to-back goals, and despite Ryan Obloj's goal with 39 seconds left, the Tigers trailed 10-6 at halftime.

The game was all but over when the Greyhounds opened the second half with two straight goals to make it 12-6, and Bloomquist and senior close defenders Michael Stromberg, Bryan England and John Brasko made sure of that.

Bloomquist robbed Reppert on the doorstep, and would later turn away Josh Tankersley. The Tigers had six turnovers and were 0-for-3 with the extra-man advantage in the third quarter, and were held scoreless for nearly a 20-minute stretch spanning the second to fourth quarters.

Loyola 6 4 2 3 - 15

Towson 4 2 0 1 - 7

Goals: L-Sullivan 3, Halford 3, Brundage 2, Fink 2, Summers 2, White, Case, Adams; T-Chane 2, Obloj 2, Meerholz, Campbell, Reppert. Assists: L-Summers 3, Adams 2, Brundage 2, Sullivan, Roy, Case, Fisher; T-Myers, Monaco. Saves: L-Bloomquist 18, Fretwell 1; T-Hunt 3, Sothoron 7.

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