MEN'S LACROSSE | Hoyas Fall Short in Baltimore
Published: Friday, March 23, 2012
Updated: Friday, March 23, 2012 01:03
Despite having already upset one ranked team and carrying the momentum of a four-game winning streak, the No. 18 Georgetown men’s lacrosse team (4-2, 1-0 Big East) faltered Wednesday night when they traveled to Baltimore to take on No. 5 Loyola (7-0, 2-0 ECAC). The Hoyas hung tough early but a scoring barrage from the Greyhounds put the game out of reach in the second half, 11-6.
The streak began after the Blue and Gray opened the season with a home loss to Maryland. They won the next three games of their home stand, defeating Detroit Mercy, upsetting then-No. 18 Harvard and making a late charge to beat Mount St. Mary’s.
After hitting the road, Georgetown prevailed at Providence in their Big East opener. But the winning streak did flash warning signs, since the Hoyas only notched one-goal victories over the Crimson, the Mount and the Friars.
The Blue and Gray couldn’t work any miracles against the undefeated Greyhounds, who averaged 13.3 points per game while holding their opponents to 7.7. The Hoyas were also up against history, having lost four straight games to the Greyhounds. In fact, Loyola leads the all-time series, 28-6.
But Georgetown certainly didn’t seem intimidated early on. Although Loyola scored the first goal of the game, two goals from junior midfielder Dan McKinney and one from senior midfielder Francis McDonough put the Hoyas up, 3-1.
The Greyhounds, though, responded with three straight goals to close the first quarter, including two from graduate student attack Eric Lusby.
Georgetown’s predicament began to worsen in the second quarter, as the Hoyas’ defense allowed the Greyhounds to take 13 shots, compared to only four for the Blue and Gray.
While each team only scored one goal apiece — thanks in part to outstanding play in goal from Georgetown senior Matt Winter, who had a career-high 14 saves — Loyola had the ball for much of the half and carried momentum into the break.
After the intermission, junior midfielder Brian Casey tied the game at five. But junior attack Mike Sawyer’s goal for Loyola with 10:44 to go in the third quarter jumpstarted a Greyhound 6-0 run that lasted until the 5:48 mark in the final period.
Sawyer had three goals during the streak and Lusby ran his total to five for the game by also scoring three times. On top of giving Loyola lots of opportunities — the Greyhounds took twice as many shots as the Hoyas, 48-24 — Georgetown also struggled with penalties, as four different Hoyas were called for slashing or holding penalties.
Although Loyola didn’t convert on any of the man-up opportunities, it still inhibited the Blue and Gray’s offensive rhythm. Even Casey’s second goal — the final goal of the game — could only cut the Greyhounds’ advantage to 11-6, dropping the Hoyas to 4-2 on the year.
Georgetown will have to regroup quickly from the loss before it hosts No. 10 Duke (6-3, 1-1 ACC) tomorrow afternoon.
Duke has statistics similar to Loyola’s, averaging nearly 12 points a game while holding opponents to only nine. The Blue Devils are also known for taking a flurry of shots, the same kind of play that doomed the Hoyas against the Greyhounds.
If there is one silver lining for Georgetown, however, it is that Duke has struggled away from Durham, as all three of its losses have come on the road. Still, the Hoyas will need a much better defensive effort — and a higher-octane offense — to beat the Blue Devils.
Faceoff is set for 12 p.m. tomorrow at the MultiSport Facility.