FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – After a back and forth battle in the first half that saw two Terrapin leads and three ties, the University of Maryland men’s lacrosse team fell to top-seeded Loyola 9-3 Monday in the NCAA title game in front of 30,816 at Gillette Stadium.
Junior Jesse Bernhardt, redshirt sophomore Mike Chanenchuk, and junior Kevin Cooper scored all three of Maryland’s goals in the first 20 minutes of the game, but the Greyhounds (18-1) took a two-goal lead before halftime they would not relinquish.
Jesse Bernhardt put the Terrapins on the board first with 9:34 to go in the first quarter. He went coast to coast down the field for the score after sophomore Michael Ehrhardt forced a Greyhound turnover. Bernhardt did the rest, scoring on a low shot in transition from the right alley.
Loyola tied it up just under five minutes later with a shot by Davis Butts from Chris Layne. Eric Lusby gave the Hounds their first lead at 2-1 with an unassisted goal with 1:55 remaining in the first quarter.
Chanenchuk tied the game up with 12:12 left in the second quarter. He came around the cage and shot under the stick of Loyola’s Josh Hawkins for the Terps’ second goal.
Less than 90 seconds later, senior Joe Cummings found Kevin Cooper in the middle of the box to send a straight shot into the back of the net for a 3-2 Maryland lead.
With 9:22 to go in the first half, Loyola’s Pat Byrnes tied the game back up with an unassisted score. Loyola took ahold of the lead with just under six minutes to go when Mike Sawyer scored off a pass from Layne to make it 4-3. Two minutes later, the Greyhounds extended their lead to two with an unassisted goal from Phil Dobson.
Loyola led 5-3 at the break, then made it a 6-3 lead with 10:12 to go in the third quarter with an unassisted goal by Justin Ward.
Lusby pushed Loyola’s lead to four with 11:12 left in the fourth quarter. Layne picked up his third assist of the day on the play. Lusby scored his third and fourth goals of the game in the final five minutes to make it a 9-3 final score.
The Terps took 19 of their 29 shots in the second half, including 12 in the fourth quarter and six in the final 3:45, but their stretch of unlucky shooting continued.
Sophomore goalkeeper Niko Amato finished with eight saves, while Loyola’s Jack Runkel finished with six. Four of Runkel’s saves came in the second half to hold the Terps off.
Joe Cummings, Drew Snider and Jesse Bernhardt were named to the NCAA All-Tournament team.
Maryland ends the season with a 12-6 record on the season.
The game marked the end of a remarkable run for seven Maryland seniors: Joe Cummings, MJ Leonard, David Miller, Pat Morrison, Tim Shaeffer, Michael Shakespeare and Drew Snider. The 2012 senior class compiled a 47-22 (.712) record during its time in College Park, brought the Terps their first ACC Championship since 2005 and took the team to back-to-back NCAA title games for the first time since 1997 and 1998.
• With today’s 9-3 loss, Maryland is now 19-2 all-time vs. Loyola.
• The Terps are now 1-1 all-time vs. the Greyhounds in the NCAA tournament and 1-1 in the Final Four.
• Maryland is now 2-9 all-time in the finals of the NCAA tournament.
• Second-year head coach John Tillman has led the Terrapins to the NCAA Championship game in both of his first two seasons in College Park. He owns a record of 25-11 (.694) and an NCAA Tournament record of 6-2 at Maryland.