Photo Courtesy of Maryland Athletics

No. 1 Maryland men’s lacrosse ousts Johns Hopkins in dominant fashion, 22-7

BALTIMORE—The Terps were firmly in control. That wasn’t enough.

Ahead of the Blue Jays by eight to start the second half, Maryland rattled off ten unanswered goals to crush any hopes of a comeback for Johns Hopkins — showcasing its dominance one more time in the regular season.

Led by eight points from Logan Wisnauskas, No. 1 Maryland men’s lacrosse finished out the regular season with no blemishes for the second year in a row, downing Johns Hopkins in overwhelming fashion in The Rivalry, 22-7.

“We were really on the guys to stay focused,” coach John Tillman said. “The guys executed. They finished shots, they did a really good job of that. They made the extra pass. Once we got going, I think they got a little more confident as things went on.”

Playing in front of a raucous crowd at Homewood Field, Maryland started the goal scoring in a hurry.

Kyle Long and former Blue Jay Owen Murphy opened things up, sneaking shots past Josh Kirson to put the Terps ahead 2-0 in the game’s first minute. Shortly after, Roman Puglise sniped a goal of his own and Keegan Khan rebounded a Jack Brennan miss into the net, as Maryland rushed out to a 4-0 advantage.

Connor DeSimone finally got Hopkins on the board, making Puglise miss before finishing past Logan McNaney. A handful of controlled possessions on the Blue Jays’ end kept Maryland from building on its early advantage. 

Despite spending a decent chunk of time on offense, McNaney stifled the Blue Jays’ attempts, racking up six saves in the first frame.

“We knew they would make a push or a run,” Tillman said. “When they broke down, I felt like Logan [McNaney] did a great job of making saves.”

Anthony DeMaio and Jack Koras nabbed goals to close out the first quarter, as Maryland jumped out to a 6-1 advantage through 15 minutes.

In the second frame, Maryland continued to score. First, Khan quick-sticked one past Kirson on an extra-man chance. A possession later, he and Murphy broke up a Hopkins clear, setting up Murphy’s second goal.

Johns Hopkins was able to muster a response. The Blue Jays racked up back-to-back goals, using chippy play on the other end to keep the Terps from continuing the rout.

But Maryland’s veterans ended the Blue Jays’ run before it got off the ground.

Over the course of ten seconds of game time, Maryland mustered three goals, taking the wind out of the sails of any Hopkins comeback. Logan Wisnauskas fed a pass to DeMaio, who scored his second goal of the game, before catching a pass in transition a possession later and getting himself in the scoring column. 

Luke Wierman followed it up, winning the next faceoff and rushed another shot to the back of the net. In mere moments, Maryland led by eight.

“That one was big,” Tillman said. “Just kind of getting the break and again, Luke’s done such a good job, every week he’s practicing different things. We’re working on techniques with the faceoffs, but he is always working on shooting.”

Joey Epstein grabbed one point back for the Blue Jays, but it was offset by another goal for Wisnauskas as the Terps headed into halftime ahead, 12-4.

The Terps opened the third quarter as if they were down in the contest. Seven goals in the period’s first eight-and-a-half minutes — via Eric Malever, Wisnauskas, Murphy, Long and Jonathan Donville — blowing any chance of a Blue Jays rally to smithereens.

Khan added two more goals for the Terps to close out the period, sandwiching Wisnauskas’ fifth of the day as Maryland used a 10-0 third quarter run to put the result out of doubt.

“For us, it was like, ‘let’s start the third quarter, win the first five minutes’,” Tillman said. “Certainly didn’t expect it to go as well as it did, but obviously, we’ll take it.”

Tillman emptied the bench to close out the game, as Maryland cruised to a second straight unbeaten regular season. The Blue Jays outscored the Terps 3-0 in the final 15 minutes, but any hopes of a comeback were dashed shortly after halftime.

10 different Terps scored a goal and six players recorded at least three points in the contest, as Maryland closed the regular season with an offensive showcase. McNaney made 11 saves in the net on the other end. Wierman finished the game 17-27 on faceoffs, pacing the Terps offensive attack throughout the day.

“We had a good time out there,” McNaney said.

Despite losing 2021 Tewaaraton winner Jared Bernhardt from a season ago, Maryland never skipped a beat — beating every regular season opponent in its path. With postseason play rolling around, the Terps will again be chasing perfection as the 2022 season comes to a close.

“We’ve had a good first 12 games this season,” McNaney said. “We have to keep it in the back of our minds that it’s playoff time now and we can’t let distractions distract us. We gotta keep the train rolling.”

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