April 21, 2007
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Max Ritz tied his career high with six points on a season-best four goals and two assists to lead the No. 8 University of Maryland men's lacrosse team (9-4) to a 14-10 win over Penn (6-6) Saturday afternoon at Franklin Field.
Ritz, a native of Wayne, Pa., just outside of Philadelphia, scored a hat trick in the first half to keep Maryland in the game as the Quakers, who were playing to keep any hopes of an NCAA tournament bid alive, held two-goal leads twice in the half.
But with just over a minute remaining and Penn holding a 6-5 lead, Ritz's third goal of the game tied the contest in spectacular fashion. The junior All-America candidate took a feed from junior midfielder Drew Evans in front of the crease and as momentum and a Quaker defender were taking Ritz to the right side, he flipped the ball over his left shoulder for a behind-the-back goal.
The Quakers were determined to put up a fight and took their fifth lead of the game just 26 seconds into the third quarter on Craig Andrzejwski's second goal of the game. But that would be Penn's last lead as the Terps would rip off four straight to finish the period and take a 10-7 lead into the fourth. Senior All-America candidate Michael Phipps figured in on two of the goals, scoring a goal and adding an assist. He also picked up an assist on Thomas Alford's goal, which gave Maryland its first lead at 8-7. Evans started the run with a low-to-high shot from the right wing.
Penn's Garvey Heiderman put an end to the run with his first of two goals on the day. But that just set off another four-goal scoring spree for the Terps that put the game out of reach.
Sophomore midfielder Dan Groot scored his second goal of the game, capitalizing on a man-up opportunity, off an assist from Ritz. Maryland picked up its next two scores from the left alley from senior midfielder Jon Beard and freshman attackman Fran Gormley. Beard scored his second of the season of a nifty low-to-high shot off of a roll dodge, while Gormley got one past Quaker goalie Chris Casey, who finished with 13 saves, with a tough bounce shot with a pair of defenders bearing down on him.
Ritz capped off the scoring for the Terps, which gave them a 14-8 lead, thanks to some quick hands. Phipps laced a shot that beat Casey, but it clipped the left post and bounced right to Ritz, who scooped up the groundball and flipped it into the net in one smooth motion.
Penn finished the game with two late goals by J.J Lian, who tallied three scores on the day, and Heiderman.
Senior Harry Alford picked up the win in net for the Terrapins after taking over for starting goalie Brian Phipps at the beginning of the third quarter. Alford made six saves to pick up win No. 23 for his career.
Maryland's defense was tenacious all afternoon, forcing 18 of Penn's 26 turnovers. Senior All-American Steve Whittenberg enjoyed another tremendous game with four caused turnovers and three groundballs. All-America candidates Ryan Clarke and Joe Cinosky each had four groundballs and combined for five caused turnovers.
Tewaaraton Trophy nominee Ray Megill also had a solid day for the Terps, causing a turnover and picking up a groundball, but the senior All-American also sparked the offense. He scored his third goal of the season at the start of the second quarter to tie the game at 3-3.
The Quakers won 16-of-28 face-offs, but freshman defensive midfielder Bryn Holmes turned the tide in the second half, winning 7-of-11 draws and picking up a game-high seven groundballs.
Maryland returns to action on Friday, April 27 against No. 4 Virginia in the semifinals of the ACC tournament in Durham, N.C. That game is scheduled for a 6 p.m. start at Duke's Koskinen Stadium.
With today's 14-10 win Maryland is now 8-0 all-time vs. Penn.
With six points on four goals and two assists Max Ritz now has six hat tricks, 15 multi-goal and 25 multi-point games in his career.
The six-point game tied Ritz's career high for points and is his 14th-straight game with multiple points.
Michael Phipps pushed his point-scoring streak to 14 games with his three-point effort.
Phipps now has 22 multi-point games and 11 multi-assist games in his career.