ANN ARBOR, MI – The visiting Johns Hopkins men’s lacrosse team used a 10-0 run in the second and third quarters and held host Michigan scoreless for a stretch of 31:50 from the first to the fourth quarters as the Blue Jays scored a 14-8 win over the Wolverines Saturday afternoon. Johns Hopkins improves to 5-4 overall and 1-0 in the Big Ten, while the Wolverines slip to 3-6 overall and 0-1.
Trailing 5-3 at the end of the first quarter after Michigan scored the final two goals of the opening period, the Blue Jays methodically put the game away by outscoring the Wolverines 10-0 in the second and third quarters combined.
It took just 62 seconds for the Blue Jays to slice the 5-3 deficit to 5-4 as junior Forry Smith fired one home from the wing after a nice one-more from senior Kyle Marr. The 5-4 Michigan lead held for more than eight minutes before the second of Joey Epstein’s three first-half goals ignited a spree that saw the Blue Jays score three goals in a three-minute span.
Epstein opened the three-goal flurry with his second of the game, while an Alex Concannon goal in tight after a dodge from the wing and an Epstein goal in transition after senior Danny Jones caused a turnover with 2:15 left in the first half accounted for the two-goal Blue Jay lead at intermission.
It took less than three minutes of the third quarter for the Blue Jays to double their two-goal halftime lead as Cole Williams scored from close range at the 12:39 mark and Smith added another extra-man goal 12 seconds later to make it 9-5.
The four-goal lead held until the middle of the third quarter, when the Blue Jays scored three goals in a 33-second span to effectively put the game away. Another extra-man goal from Smith, a 65-yard shot into an open net by Owen Colwell and a nifty diving goal from Marr in an unsettled situation accounted for the three goals that made it 12-5.
A Matt Stagnitta strike with 72 seconds left in the third polished off the ten-goal run, while Michigan’s Avery Myers slipped inside a defender just over a minute into the fourth quarter to end the scoring drought for the Wolverines.
Javon Johnson and Brent Noseworthy wrapped goals around an extra-man tally by Concannon in the final nine minutes to account for the final scoring.
A spirited start saw the Wolverines jump to a 3-2 lead less than seven minutes into the game and then answer Epstein’s first with Decker Curran and Kevin Mack goals in the final 4:28 to grab the 5-3 lead at the end of the first quarter. Mack’s goal would be the last for UM until Myers tallied early in the fourth; by then, the Blue Jays had turned the 5-3 deficit into the 13-5 lead that was never threatened down the stretch.
Smith scored a career-high four goals and Epstein added three goals and two assists to pace the Blue Jays, who also got a 16-of-21 performance on faceoffs from sophomore Kyle Prouty. Prouty added 13 ground balls as JHU held a 34-16 advantage in GBs. Sophomore Ryan Darby totaled eight saves for the Blue Jays.
Curran and Myers both scored twice for Michigan, which also got 15 saves from Gunner Gurn. The Wolverines scored on 5-of-13 shots in the first quarter, but just 3-of-18 over the final three periods.
Johns Hopkins will return to action on Saturday, April 6 when the Blue Jays welcome Rutgers to Homewood Field (2 pm) for Homecoming.
Notes: Williams’ goal was the 50th of his career • Marr is now just two goals shy of 100 and four points shy of 150 • Epstein has totaled at least two points in each of the first nine games of his career • 11 of the Blue Jays’ 14 goals were assisted, including the Colwell goal that Darby got a helper on • The win was the 225th for head coach Dave Pietramala.