Guild, Invernizzi recall 1932 game as one of a kind

Memories: Lorne Guild's Blue Jays won Olympic rights by beating Fred Invernizzi's Terps.

April 17, 2004|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,SUN STAFF

A crowd estimated at 30,000 poured into the old Baltimore stadium on 33rd Street as the University of Maryland and Johns Hopkins University lacrosse teams prepared to face off to earn a trip to the 1932 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

It was the second time they had met, and many believed there was no need for this game, the culmination of an eight-team playoff system. Hopkins was already considered the best team in the nation after going undefeated in 10 previous games, including postseason victories over St. John's and the Crescents.

Since few nations played the sport (only Canada challenged Hopkins in the '32 games), it marked the last time lacrosse would be part of the Olympic schedule.

"At the time, I think it was the largest crowd ever to see a lacrosse game," said Maryland's goalkeeper in that event, Fred Invernizzi, 93. "Of all the games I played in, I always remembered that one against Hopkins."

Hopkins won, 7-5, and later "had a wonderful time in California," according to Lorne Guild, also 93 and then a first-team All-American midfielder for the Blue Jays. "We left Camden Station and went overnight on the train [to California]."

Another Hopkins All-American, captain Jack Turnbull, twice scored tying goals as the Blue Jays came from behind after trailing 3-2 at halftime. In the final three minutes, Don Kelly scored twice to clinch the victory.

"I think we set it up where we gave him the ball and drew everybody else away from him," said Guild. `They put us on one side of the field and him on the other."

"It was a tremendous game, but very disappointing," said Invernizzi, who also received All-America mention during that period. "You always want to represent your country. I remember coming off the field and going back to where you changed clothes and my brother came up to me to talk with me and I went past him and wouldn't speak to him."

"I've tried to console myself [for 72 years] by remembering that one of their shots went through my stick and another one, shot from a fairly good distance, was deflected when a defenseman put his stick up."

Invernizzi lived the majority of his life in Baltimore after earning his law degree. He taught at the University of Maryland law school for 18 years, served as the state's first court administrator, was the secretary of the Board of Law Examiners and served on the District Court of Maryland (except for a brief period) from 1973 until finally retiring at age 80 in 1990. He has lived in Charlottesville, Va., since 1995.

His son-in-law, Mike Gallahue, is bringing him to tonight's game and he will stay in Northern Virginia overnight before returning home. "I guess I'll be late getting to bed," said Invernizzi, who did not realize the game was at night.

Oddly, he almost never got to the lacrosse field. He hadn't played the sport at City College.

"When I was a freshman, they had a line for tryouts and a little fellow [about 5 feet tall] was in front of me," said Invernizzi. "He said he was an attackman and they said, `You're too small.' So, when I got up there, I said, `I'm going out for goalie.' "

Guild most remembers "running up and down the field" during the playoff game. "I was always on the field at both ends."

Now at Broadmead retirement community in Hunt Valley, Guild said he has a "vague recollection" of "meeting some movie actors" in California. According to Hopkins records, 145,000 people attended three games between the Blue Jays and the Canadian team. Hopkins won two of those.

The 1932 Hopkins-Maryland playoff game earned more money for the Olympic fund than the tryouts in any other sport. According to the remembrances of two men who played it in, the 30,000 fans got their money's worth.

10 to remember

Johns Hopkins and Maryland will meet for the 100th time today, with the Blue Jays leading the series 62-36-1. A look at 10 memorable games between the rivals:

May 18, 1940

Maryland 7, Johns Hopkins 6: After ditching their heavy wool jerseys in favor of lighter sweat shirts with rubber-stamped numbers, the Terps erased a 4-0 deficit with seven consecutive goals on a balmy afternoon in College Park to repeat as United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association champions. The comeback was paced by Jack "The Moose" Mueller's three goals and one assist.

May 17, 1952

Johns Hopkins 10, Maryland 10, 2 OT: The only tie in the rivalry's history was forged when Hopkins' Ed McNicholas and Buzzy Budnitz teamed for two goals in the last four minutes of regulation. A total of 18 shots - 16 by the Terps - in the two overtime periods at Homewood failed to produce a winner.

May 18, 1957

Johns Hopkins 15, Maryland 10: The Blue Jays ended Maryland's 31-game winning streak and two-year run as USILA champion with a convincing victory in College Park. It marked the first of Blue Jays legendary coach Bob Scott's seven national championships, and halted a six-game winless streak to the Terps, Maryland's longest stretch of success in the series.

June 2, 1973

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