Terps remember how to rally, surging past UMBC in 15-8 win

Maryland breaks pattern after falling behind 3-1

Mollot gets 9th hat trick

April 26, 2003|By Paul McMullen | Paul McMullen,SUN STAFF

COLLEGE PARK - For the first time in 20 days, Maryland led in a men's lacrosse game last night. The No. 6 Terps enjoyed the experience so much, they ran away from UMBC, scoring seven straight goals in the first half and coasting, 15-8.

The early run erased a familiar uneasy feeling for the Terps and set up their fourth straight win over their state-system rival.

It was the first victory for coach Dave Cottle's team since April 5, when Maryland beat Navy. That was also the last game in which the Terps had led, as they fell behind 3-0 to both Johns Hopkins and Duke.

The 11th-ranked Retrievers (7-5) needed six shots to take a 3-1 lead in front of a crowd of 1,933 at Byrd Stadium, but designs on what would have been their best win went under amid a steady rain and a goal-a-minute deluge from the Terps (8-3). It was UMBC's fourth loss to a Top 10 team.

"We put together a good game on offense and defense, and usually only one side plays well," defenseman Michael Howley said. "What happened was a reflection of practice this week. The offense had constant movement and made better decisions. They looked sharp all week. ... We still have to figure out the first-quarter thing."

Limited to 11 total goals in its two previous games, the Maryland offense rallied behind its All-Atlantic Coast Conference midfielders and connected on five of its first seven shots to lead after one period for the first time in six games.

Held without a point by Hopkins and Duke, Mike Mollot started on attack and produced his ninth career hat trick. Before Mollot did his damage, Ryan Moran softened up UMBC.

Moran erased the early deficit by driving right and scoring goals a minute apart. Sean Leary, one of several Terps who got ceremonial starts on Senior Night, put Maryland ahead to stay at 4-3 with 1:05 left in the first quarter. Justin Smith, who played for UMBC last season, made it four goals in as many minutes for a 5-3 lead.

Maryland put together a similar flurry late in the second quarter, when two goals by Mollot and another by an unguarded Dan LaMonica made it 8-3 at the half. Terps goalie Dan McCormick did not record a save in the second and third quarters, when the home team forced 14 turnovers and got its lead as high as seven goals, the first time at 13-5.

Flanagan had 15 saves for the Retrievers, but the Terps knew where to beat him, as they made 44.1 percent of their shots. Josh Gerber recorded three goals for UMBC, but attack mate Brendan Mundorf was checked by Howley and didn't attempt a shot until the fourth quarter.

Locked out of the NCAA tournament last year, the Terps can sew up a favorable first-round game by beating Georgetown on Monday, in the makeup of a season opener that was rained out.

The Terps will conclude the regular season a week from today at Notre Dame. UMBC will also finish at a Great Western Lacrosse League foe, and it must win at Ohio State on April 30 to stay in the hunt for an NCAA bid.

"We didn't handle adversity well," UMBC coach Don Zimmerman said. "Our whole game is about discipline and poise. They turned up the pressure, we got down a couple of goals and I saw some guys hanging their heads."

UMBC 3 0 2 3 - 8

Maryland 5 3 4 3 - 15

Goals: UMBC-Gerber 3, Grillo 2, Hyland, Kesterman. Muston; M-Mollot 3, Walters 3, Moran 2, J. Smith 2, Gillette, LaMonica, S. Leary, Schwartzman, Urlock. Assists: UMBC-Cahill, Grillo, Wojtech; M-Moran 2, J. Smith 2, Daue, Gillette, Harper, Hunt, Mollot. Saves: UMBC-Flanagan 15; M-McCormick 6.

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