March 11, 2006
College Park, Md. - All-American Brendan Healy tallied his fourth career hat trick, including scoring the game-winning goal, to lead the No. 1-ranked Maryland men's lacrosse team to a 9-6 victory over No. 15 Towson Saturday afternoon at Byrd Stadium.
The Terps controlled the first half of play and dominated the Tigers in Maryland's defensive zone, but only took a 4-0 lead into the second half.
All-American Joe Walters opened the scoring for the Terps off an assist from Michael Phipps at the 9:41 mark. Maryland looked to be taking a 1-0 lead into the second period, but freshman midfielder Dan Groot laced a shot past Towson goalie Mark DeGroat with just eight seconds left for a 2-0 Terrapin lead.
The second quarter was scoreless for both teams until Healy took a pass from Xander Ritz and beat DeGroat for his first goal of the season with 3:35 remaining. Walters scored his second goal of the game off an assist from Max Ritz less than a minute later to give the Terps their 4-0 halftime lead.
The third quarter started slowly, but the Tigers were woken up with seven and a half minutes gone in the period then Steve Mull found an open Bobby Griebe, who slipped the ball past Maryland goalie Harry Alford for Towson's first goal of the game. Tiger attackman Kyle Fiat scored the first of his two goals less than two minutes later to cut the Terrapin lead in half at 4-2.
Maryland responded with a man-up goal by Bill McGlone off an assist from Walters to up its lead to 5-2, but the Tigers responded with three unanswered goals, including Griebe's second of the game as the third quarter clock hit 0:00, to knot the game at 5-5 heading into the fourth quarter.
In the final quarter the Tigers seemed to have momentum in their favor, but Alford made a fantastic save at 12:18, robbing Griebe of his third goal of the game. Griebe, who slipped through the Terrapin defense and was on-on-one with Alford, made two fakes before taking a shot high, but Alford stayed with the Tiger attackman and made the save to swing the momentum back in the Terps' favor.
Ritz gave Maryland a 6-5 lead less than two minutes after Alford's save when he took advantage of a mismatch with Tiger offensive midfielder Nick Williams and banged home a shot past DeGroat. That set the stage for Healy, who scored two unassisted goals less than three minutes apart for an 8-5 Terps' lead.
It seemed Towson had one more run in it when midfielder Brian Vetter scored a man-up goal off an assist from Mull at the 4:15 mark to pull the Tigers to within a pair of goals at 8-6.
Alford stepped up and made another big save at 3:08 to squelch any hope of Towson building momentum in the game's final minutes. The Terps easily cleared the ball into the Tiger defensive zone where Walters scored his third goal to put the game out of reach at 9-6.
Maryland dominated possession all afternoon, with David Tamberrino winning 10-of-18 face-offs and the Terrapin defense forcing 24 Towson turnovers. Long-pole defensive midfielders Ryan Clarke and Charlie Wiggins combined to pick-up eight groundballs and force three Tiger turnovers. Alford finished the game with 12 saves and led the Terps with five groundballs. All-America defenseman Steve Whittenberg caused a career-high five turnovers to go along with four groundballs. Overall, Maryland won the groundball battle 40-21.
The top-ranked Terps have a short turnaround as they return to action on Tuesday, March 14 against Bucknell. That game is scheduled for a 7:00 p.m. start at the Maryland Field Hockey and Lacrosse Complex.
With today's 9-6 win Maryland is 23-5 all-time vs. Towson.
Maryland is now 14-7 all-time when ranked No. 1 coming into a game.
With three goals and an assist Joe Walters extended his point scoring streak to 36 games.
Walters now has 26 hat tricks, 33 multi-goal games and 42 multi-points games in his career.
Walters is now tied for fifth with Scott Hochstadt (1996-99) on Maryland's all-time goal scoring list with 121.
Xander Ritz extended his point scoring streak scoring to 20 games with a goal and an assist.
For Ritz, his two-point game raises his career multi-point game total to 33.
Healy's three-goal game marks the fourth hat trick, 12th multi-goal game and 20th multi-point game of his career.
When Walters and McGlone score goals in the same game Maryland is now 25-9.