COLUMBUS – Junior Dan Morris matched his career-high with 16 saves and Connor Kelly scored four goals to lead the No. 1 Maryland men's lacrosse team to an 8-6 victory over 4th-seeded Penn State in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals Thursday.
The Terps (11-3) will play the winner of Ohio State and Johns Hopkins Saturday evening at 7:30 pm on Big Ten Network. Maryland improved to 35-0 all-time against Penn State.
Kelly, who has 12 goals over his last three Big Ten Tournament contests, had a hand in all five of Maryland's last five goals, including scoring the final four.
Maryland imposed its will in the first half defensively, holding the Nittany Lions to just one goal. Penn State was scoreless in the final 22:23 of the half.
Colin Heacock put the Terps on the board first with a goal less than two minutes into the game, before Tim Rotanz doubled the lead at the 11:50 mark. After Penn State scored, Maryland answered with a goal from freshman Jared Bernhardt.
Rotanz scored the lone goal of the second quarter on a feed from Kelly, as Dan Morris finished the half with seven stops.
The Terps opened the second half with a goal in 19 seconds, as Matt Neufeldt pushed transition and fed Isaiah Davis-Allen, who found Kelly for the goal.
Penn State responded with three goals in a three minute span to draw within one, 5-4, but the Terps answered with a critical three goal run of their own to give themselves an insurmountable 8-4 lead.
The Terps are back in the Big Ten Tournament finals for the second consecutive season, and will look to defend their 2016 crown Saturday night.