#5 Maryland Uses Defense To Down #9 North Carolina

Maryland Athletics
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March 23, 2002

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. - Fifth-ranked Maryland used its brilliant defense to dominate the second half Saturday afternoon and hand the #9 North Carolina men's lacrosse team its first loss of the season by a 7-5 score before 2,107 fans at Fetzer Field. Both teams now stand 6-1 overall on the season and 1-1 in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Midfielder Alex Poole led the Terrapins offensively with two goals and one assist and midfielder Mike Mollot added two assists to help the cause for the Terps. Defensively the Terps buckled down in the second half, going on a 4-0 run to wipe out a 3-2 Tar Heel halftime lead and take control of the game.

Both goalkeepers played well with Maryland junior Danny McCormick making 14 saves and North Carolina freshman Paul Spellman making 11. UNC was led offensively by midfielder Andrew Lucas who had two goals and Austin Garrison who had one goal and one assist.

UNC jumped on top less than two minutes into the game on a goal by Andrew Lucas but the Terps answered quickly with a goal by Poole and another by J.R. Bordley, assisted by Poole. UNC's Andy Jonas tied the game on an extra-man opportunity with 5:14 left in the first quarter and Tim Gosier gave UNC the lead late in the period on an unassisted goal.

Neither team scored in the second quarter despite the fact there were 23 combined shots between the two teams. But in the third quarter Maryland's defense began to dominate the game, forcing UNC turnovers and converting them into goals on the other end of the field. Poole scored his second goal of the game three minutes into the second half of play and when Nate Watkins scored on a bounce shot with 7:55 left in the third quarter the Terps had the lead for good. Attackman Mike LaMonica added to the lead with an extra-man goal with 5:19 left in the third quarter and Ryan Moran scored an unassisted goal 45 seconds into the fourth quarter to put the Terps in charge 6-3.

Maryland had two great chances to put the game away but Mike LaMonica missed on a behind the back shot and another one-on-one opportunity was denied when the Terps were caught in the crease. Garrison scored for Carolina with 8:38 to play and the Tar Heels had at least two possessions after that but could not get a goal that would have put the pressure on. Eventually an unassisted goal by Matt Brock with 2:12 remaining clinched the win for Maryland. Lucas scored his second goal of the game on an extra-man in the last minute but it only cut the final deficit to two goals.

Both teams face tough tasks next weekend. UNC plays at #1 Johns Hopkins Friday night at 7:30 p.m. while Maryland hosts #4 Virginia next Saturday at 1 p.m.