Georgetown's Emala overcomes pain to score five goals

March 12, 2011|By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun

Davey Emala's second five-goal performance in as many games almost didn't occur.

The Georgetown sophomore attackman was nearly sidelined by what he described as pain along the left ribcage area that prevented him from practicing Wednesday and Thursday. But he withstood the pain and almost propelled the No. 15 Hoyas to an upset before they fell to top-ranked Syracuse, 9-8, in overtime in the first game of the Konica Minolta Face-Off Classic at M&T Bank Stadium Saturday.

"I always try to never even consider not playing," the Baltimore native and Gilman graduate said. "Today, my left side was in some pain. Luckily when the game started and with us being in such a great atmosphere, the adrenaline kicked in and I really didn't feel it."

Emala even took a CT scan at Georgetown University Hospital to ensure that he hadn't suffered any damage to his spleen or other internal organs when he left the Hoyas' 16-15 loss to Harvard Tuesday. After results proved negative, he returned to practice Friday.

"I tried to ignore that and sort of focus on the fact that we were playing at Ravens Stadium in my hometown and against the No. 1 team in the nation," Emala said. "If you need more than that to get excited for a game, then something's wrong. That was real motivation for me."

Emala, who has been starting for the injured Zac Guy (broken thumb), leads Georgetown in goals (17) and points (19). He certainly impressed Orange goalkeeper John Galloway.

"He's a very talented shooter," said Galloway, who made a game-high 13 saves. "I don't think many people know his name, but they're going to after this game."

Palasek returns to Baltimore

In his first return to Baltimore since transferring to Syracuse, former Johns Hopkins attackman Tom Palasek did not take a shot nor record a point.

"Driving in was kind of weird because I've driven here so many times," the junior said. "It was kind of weird and nice at the same time. So it was nice to come back and kind of see it. Hopefully, the next time I'll be here, it will be championship weekend. But other than that, it's just another game for us. It was our first travel game, so it was nice to get that under our belt."

Attendance down

An announced attendance of 17,057 watched the Face-Off Classic, which was the second-smallest crowd since its debut in 2007.

The smallest crowd to attend the event was 17,000 in 2009, and that was just a doubleheader involving Maryland against Duke, and Princeton against Johns Hopkins.

"I think it just illustrates what the market is for this type of product," said Andy Bilello, director of business development for Inside Lacrosse, which organized the tripleheader. "We're going to get into the high teens. Maybe there are some variables with the date, the weather, the exact game lineup that may impact where you fall in that range. I'm neither excited nor am I terribly disappointed."

Double duty for Brattons

Virginia's midfield connection of twin brothers Rhamel and Shamel Bratton is playing double duty. The Cavaliers are using both players elsewhere as attackmen and on defense. According to Virginia coach Dom Starsia, he will continue to use them, but not for the entire season.

"We can't keep them on the field the entire game. A couple of guys need to grow as players," said Starsia.

Pannell shines in losing effort

Cornell attackman Rob Pannell showed why he is one of the best in the college game, as he scored four goals in the Big Red's 11-9 loss to Virginia.

Pannell was disappointed with the loss, but thought it could be a step in the right direction for Cornell, which was close to full strength for the first time in weeks.

"We can play with anybody in country," said Pannell. "A couple of things didn't go our way, and we made a couple of mistakes in the second half that allowed the game to get away. But we can beat anybody in the country. When we're at full strength and on the same page, we can be the team we want to be."

Et cetera

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