Salisbury routs Washington College

In Division III showdown, No. 1 Sea Gulls start fast, finish No. 2 Shoremen, 21-7

College Lacrosse

May 02, 2004|By Sam Atkinson | Sam Atkinson,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

SALISBURY - The second-ranked Washington College men's lacrosse team had a familiar, gut-wrenching feeling on the sideline in yesterday's highly anticipated 35th meeting of the "War on the Shore" with defending Division III national champion Salisbury University.

The top-ranked Sea Gulls made quick work of the Shoremen en route to a 21-7 victory before 2,808 at Sea Gull Stadium.

The Sea Gulls (16-0) ran their winning streak to a national-best 25 games dating back to last season. They are likely to be named the top seed for the NCAA Division III tournament and have clinched home-field advantage in the South region. The tournament field will be announced next Sunday.

"It is our way through the playoffs on our field, and we play pretty well on this field," said Salisbury coach Jim Berkman. "It is always nice to secure the home field for the playoffs."

The Sea Gulls stormed out to a 7-0 lead in the first quarter much like they did a year ago in Chestertown when Salisbury won, 17-12.

"They did it to us last year, too," said Washington coach J.B. Clarke of the quick Salisbury start. "I don't know what it is. If I had the answer it probably wouldn't have happened today."

Senior faceoff specialist Andy Murray (Centennial) was dominant, winning 18 of 25 draws, and did his part on the offensive end of the field.

Murray, the reigning Division III National Player and Midfielder of the Year, handed out a season-high six assists and added one goal.

"I never had that many points before but people were just getting open," Murray said.

One of those players getting open was senior attackman Corey O'Neil, who connected on two Murray assists. O'Neil had a game-high six goals to improve his season total to 56.

Washington College goalie Richard Yost (St. Paul's) had a tough afternoon as Sea Gulls players were perched on top of him for the majority of the game.

"Yost didn't have a chance. They were shooting from the doorstep," Clarke said.

Salisbury received balance scoring as nine players scored a goal, with seven scoring two or more goals.

Washington College senior midfielder Stephen Berger (Mount St. Joseph) led the Shoremen with three goals.

Sea Gulls goalie Dan Korpon (Severna Park) made six crucial saves in the first quarter to keep the Shoremen scoreless.

Washington (15-1) did not score its first goal until there was 8:18 left before halftime.

Korpon made 11 saves in the game and was replaced early in the fourth quarter as Salisbury led 20-5.

"Danny Korpon came up with several big saves early in the game to negate some of their goals," Berkman said. "Instead of it being a 5-0 game, it could have been a 5-2 or 5-3 game. He really set the tone."

Salisbury went on a 6-1 run to close out the second quarter to head into halftime up 13-2.

The 14-goal margin of victory is the largest in 10 years of this intense rivalry, which now awards the Charles B. Clark Cup to the winning team. Washington College holds the series edge, 19-16, but Salisbury has won 12 of the past 14 regular-season matchups.

Washington College 0 2 3 2 - 7

Salisbury 7 6 5 3 - 21

Goals: WC-Berger 3, Dodge 2, Spivey, Renner; S-O'Neil 6, Smith 3, Arnold 2, Boyer 2, Simmons 2, Edwards 2, Hurley 2, Murray, Ricucci. Assists: WC-Sparks, Vetter, Lane, Larkin; S-Murray 6, White 2, Arnold, Smith, Simmons. Saves: WC-Yost 10, Thibadeau 6; S-Korpon 11, Swierczek 1.

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