COLLEGE PARK, Md. - In the end, Maryland just seemed to have too many horses for the Penn men's lacrosse team Saturday afternoon at Byrd Stadium. The result was that the No. 4 Terrapins jumped out on the Quakers and never let them back into the game, taking a 12-4 decision.
The loss was critical to No. 10 Penn's chances for an NCAA Tournament bid. The Quakers (10-3) will find out their postseason fate tomorrow night when the 16-team field is announced on ESPNEWS at approximately 8:30 p.m.
"I hope the committee looks at the entire season and not just what we did today," said fourth-year head coach Brian Voelker, whose team entered Saturday's contest off a nearly two-week break because of exams. "I think we deserve to be in the field, but we have been preaching to the players that we needed to leave no doubt. Unfortunately, with today's game, we allowed that to happen."
Maryland led just 2-1 after one quarter, but used a 5-0 second quarter to effectively put this game away. The Quakers made a few runs during the third quarter, drawing within 8-4 with two minutes left in the stanza, but the Terps scored in the final minute and then held Penn scoreless again in the final quarter.
"They are a very strong defensive team," said Voelker of the Terps, who held Penn to its lowest output of the season and more than six goals below its scoring average. "They are big and fast and athletic, and you cannot allowa team like that to get out to a big lead like we did."
Maryland won the opening faceoff and had a possession that featured six shots, the last findingthe back of the net to give the Terps a 1-0 lead. Penn actually outshot Maryland 13-1 the rest of the way in the quarter, but the two teams each scored once. Craig Andrzejewski knotted the score at 1-1 on an unassisted goal, but Maryland came back three minutes later to take a 2-1 lead when Brendan Healy went for the unassisted marker.
In the second quarter, the Terps blew the game open. Bill McGlone and Joe Walters scored two minutes apart, both off feeds from Michael Phipps, and then Xander Ritz scored twice in a span of 2:38. Six minutes then passed before Walters notched his second of the day, and the teams went into the locker room with the Terps up, 7-1.
P.J. Gilbert got Penn back on the board six minutes into the third quarter, but that goal was matched four minutes later by Walters. However, James Riordan and Drew Collins tallied unassisted goals to cut the UM lead to 8-4, and it looked like the Quakers might be gaining the momentum when they won the ensuing faceoff.
However, offsides was called while Penn settled the ball, and given the possession Maryland took advantage as Walters finished a McGlone feed for his fourth of the day (and school-record 150th) to make the score 9-4 entering the final quarter.
Maxwell Ritz, Drew Evans and Healy scored in the final quarter, while the UM defense again stuffed the Penn offense. For the day, Maryland outshot Penn, 44-33.
Penn goalie Gregory Klossner struggled a bit in the first half, making just two saves, but he came back strong in the second half and had nine saves for 11 overall. At the other end, Harry Alford had nine saves before giving way down the stretch to Teddy Murphy. Of particular note, Maryland shut down Penn senior attacker D.J. Andrzejewski and held him without a point; the senior had scored in 14-straight games dating back to last season and was averaging more than more than two points a game this year.