No. 7 Terps halt skid vs. No. 6 Jays at four

Marylands Walters scores career-high eight points

Maryland 11 Johns Hopkins 4

April 16, 2006|By GARY LAMBRECHT | GARY LAMBRECHT,SUN REPORTER

Maryland was trying to stop a two-game losing streak, find its offense, and make a dent in a rivalry that Johns Hopkins has controlled in recent years. Last night at Homewood Field, the No.7 Terps got everything they needed.

Senior attackman Joe Walters scored a career-high eight points with six goals and two assists, and set the tone for an evening that belonged to Maryland, as the Terps turned the 102nd meeting between the two schools into an 11-4 win before 9,778.

Maryland (7-3) broke a four-game losing streak to the No.6 Blue Jays (5-4) in the games longest rivalry and won for only the third time in the past 12 tries against Hopkins.

Walters, the only collegiate player to make Team USA in this summers World Games who soon could become the top scorer in Maryland history, put on quite a show by scoring a hat trick in each half and had both assists in the first half.

The Terps pounced on the turnover-prone, clearing-challenged Blue Jays by taking a commanding 6-2 lead, then knocked Hopkins out by scoring five of the games next six goals to lead 11-3 midway through the fourth quarter.

Maryland outshot Hopkins 37-21 and solidified an NCAA tournament bid with the victory. The Terps also left the Blue Jays, the defending national champions, with work to do to secure their 35th consecutive tournament trip.

Sparked by Walters, Maryland dominated the second quarter with hard rides, good shooting and all-around hustle to turn a 2-0 advantage into a 6-2 halftime lead.

When they werent blowing clears with bad passes in the face of light pressure, the Blue Jays seemed to panic in the face of Marylands rides. As a result, Hopkins barely had the ball throughout the quarter.

The Terps were the picture of composure on offense, especially Walters, who had two goals and an assist in the period.

First, after the Blue Jays had scored their first goal on a 10-yarder by freshman attackman Tom Duerr 78 seconds into the quarter to cut the Maryland lead to 2-1, Walters torched Hopkins defenseman Eric Zerrlaut on a dodge from behind the cage. Before the Blue Jays could slide to him, Walters had curled around the goal and had beaten Schwartzman with 12:52 left in the half.

With 7:06 left, after Hopkins had failed on back-to-back clears after saves by Schwartzman, Walters went behind the net again. This time, he found Xander Ritz open for an easy 6-yard score, making it 4-1. Walters came right back a minute later in an extra-man situation, and buried a 12-yarder from up top to give the Terps a 5-1 lead.

After finally engineering a successful clear - and getting a derisive cheer from the crowd for doing so - the Blue Jays stopped the run on an unassisted goal by freshman midfielder Brian Christopher with 2:21 left. But the Terps, after Alfords fourth save of the half, came right back to sting Hopkins on a goal by senior midfielder Bill McGlone with 15 seconds left.

Maryland outshot Hopkins, 12-4, in the quarter.

Terps junior goalie Harry Alford, the starter for the past two seasons for Maryland, had to beat out teammate Jason Carter in a weeklong battle in practice to regain his job after getting pulled early in last weeks loss to Navy. Alford immediately responded with three first-quarter saves to help the Terps to a 2-0 lead.

Second-line midfielder Travis Holmes, off an assist by Walters, scored his second goal of the year from about 12 yards away on the right wing to give the Terps a 1-0 lead with 9:44 left in the period.

Walters scored his first goal of the night on a 10-yard extra-man shot to make it 2-0 with 2:08 left in the quarter.

gary.lambrecht@baltsun.com

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