ANN ARBOR, MI – On March 31, it had been more than eight years since the Johns Hopkins men’s lacrosse team scored a game-winning goal in the final minute of regulation.
Just 22 days later and the Blue Jays have turned the trick not just once since then, but twice. The latest of those two came with 31.1 seconds remaining in what became a 10-9 Blue Jay victory over Michigan on Saturday afternoon that secured a spot for the Blue Jays in the upcoming Big Ten Tournament, which will be played, coincidentally, at Michigan.
The hero on Saturday was once again junior attackman Kyle Marr who took a skip pass from senior midfielder Joel Tinney 12 yards above the goal line and picked the low far corner with a high-to-low extra-man strike to provide the difference-maker.
For the record, it was also Marr who scored the game-winner at Rutgers on April 1 with 14 seconds remaining in a 13-12 win over the Scarlet Knights. Prior to that, the last Johns Hopkins player win a game with a goal in the final minute of regulation was Michael Kimmel against Siena on February 28, 2010.
Marr’s game-winner capped a game that saw the teams trade a pair of three-goal runs that saw the Wolverines trail 3-0 and 7-4 but answer each time to pull even. While the Blue Jays never trailed, they couldn’t quite pull away either.
Johns Hopkins took a 5-4 lead into halftime on the strength of a Patrick Fraser goal with six seconds remaining in the second quarter. The Wolverines would go nearly 15 minutes without scoring between the second and third quarters and the 5-4 Blue Jay lead was 7-4 just over 10 minutes into the second half as an extra-man strike from Fraser and the third of Marr’s four goals gave Hopkins its second, three-goal lead of the game.
The three-goal lead was gone quickly as Michigan scored three times in a span of just under five minutes late in the third quarter and early in the fourth. Brent Noseworthy ignited the spree for Michigan with a goal at the 3:56 mark of the third and Decker Curran and Kevin Mack added unassisted goals in the final minute of the third and first minute of the fourth, respectively.
Tinney, who finished with two goals and four assists for six points, would have a hand in each of Hopkins’ final three goals. He answered Marck’s goal early in the fourth, assisted on a Brinton Valis strike 64 seconds after Mack had drawn UM even at 8-8 and then tallied the assist on Marr’s game-winner just 33 seconds after Noseworthy had made it 9-9 with his fourth goal of the game with 1:04 on the clock.
The game had opened the same way it ended as Marr opened the scoring just 79 seconds in and the one-goal margin was three less than four minutes into the opening quarter as Fraser and Tinney added first-quarter strikes of their own.
It took the Wolverines just over seven minutes to find the back of the net as Noseworthy got his hands free on extra-man chance for UM and the three-goal deficit was gone five minutes later after Mack and Alex Buckanavage scored in the final six minutes of the period.
Marr and Fraswer would sandwich second-quarter goals around another Noseworthy extra-man goal in the second quarter to account for the 5-4 halftime score. That score held for just under four minutes in the second half before Fraser’s extra-man goal jump-started the final 30 minutes of action.
Tinney paced the Blue Jays with his six-point effort; his four assists and six points both tied his personal best. Marr added four goals, senior goalie Brock Turnbaugh registered 11 saves and fellow senior Hunter Moreland was 17-of-23 on faceoffs.
Noseworthy led Michigan with his four goals, while Mack added three goals and one assist. Senior goalie Tommy Heidt totaled 12 saves in goal for Michigan.
Notes: The Blue Jays qualified for the Big Ten Tournament for the fourth consecutive year; the pairings for the tournament won’t be determined until Saturday, April 28 • Hopkins held Michigan scoreless for stretches of 13:54 and 14:22; JHU has held the opposition scoreless for a stretch of at least nine minutes 14 times in the last eight games • Marr is now just one point shy of 100 in his career • Tinney’s four assists boost his season total to 28 – that’s just four shy of Kevin Boland’s single-season record for a midfielder (32 in 2004).