No.3 Maryland men’s lacrosse sets up clinic second half by sending out No.20 Johns Hopkins 18-10
(Photo courtesy of Maryland Athletics.)
With 10:32 to play in the third quarter, Jared Bernhardt violently dodged towards the cage and fought around a pair of Johns Hopkins defenders (1-2 B1G) defeating goalkeeper Josh Kirson to give Maryland ( 3-0 B1G) an 8-7. drive.
Bernhardt was knocked down in the zone after the goal, as Maryland then surged forward with seven more goals in a dominating eight-goal third quarter. The Terps used that momentum as a springboard in the 18-10 victory, sending the coveted “Rivalry Trophy” back to College Park in the 120th meeting of all time.
“We kept saying, be patient, our time has come,” said Logan Wisnauskas. “We were just waiting for this third quarter and we kind of found that spark.
Maryland has scored 11 unanswered goals in a 22:40 period from the second quarter to the fourth quarter. Wisnauskas led Maryland’s offensive offense with nine points (2G, 7A) as the seven assists were a career-high and the most tied by a Terp since Connor Kelly in 2018.
Jared Bernhardt finished with six points (5G, 1A), while Anthony DeMaio (4G) and Daniel Maltz (3G, 3A) were essential elements of the Terps attack and often beneficiaries of Wisnauskas’ vision.
Justin Shockey also had his game-of-the-season best in Faceoff X, winning 17 of 29 faceoffs, rebounding after battling Penn State in Maryland’s final game. Shockey’s success allowed the Terps to continue earning property during their dominant run.
“I loved [Justin Shockey’s] courage today, ”said head coach John Tillman. “There were times when he didn’t necessarily win the clean ball. He stayed in the fight, got tough ground balls. He got hold of the pressure, found the right guy, and kept it simple.
The defense also intensified in the second half, leaving the Blue Jays with no easy chances as Nick Grill continued his strong senior season with a career-high four in turnover. Logan McNaney also finished with 11 saves, building on the success of his defense.
Despite the lopsided score, the first half was a back-and-forth affair with plenty of offensive firepower. After no goals were scored in the 6:23 opener, the two teams combined for eight goals in the 8:35 final of the opening quarter.
Forward Joey Epstein led the Blue Jays’ offensive charge early on, scoring the team’s first two goals, finding time and room, while midfielder Cole Williams finished the third goal of the team by using its imposing 6-foot-5 frame to create a separation.
Trailing 3-1 after Williams’ goal, the Terps orchestrated their first response to a two-goal deficit. DeMaio and Roman Puglise have scored back-to-back goals, drawing in Maryland, even helping to silence the Blue Jays.
“We didn’t play well at the start and got some quick goals that almost felt like the game was a tie,” Tillman said. “I felt like they really upgraded us at the start of this game.”
Bernhardt energized Maryland’s attack with the first goal of the second quarter. However, trailing for the first time, Johns Hopkins responded with a three-goal run over the next 5:37 to take a 7-5 lead with 3:36 left in the first half.
Forward Connor DeSimone started the race after beating Brett Makar, while midfielder Jacob Angelus and Epstein scored back-to-back goals finding creases in the Maryland defense.
Maryland mounted their response with a pair of goals to tie the score at seven in the 2:16 first-half final. To start the two-goal push, Wisnauskas fired an impressive side arm shot in front of Kirson. DeMaio then completed his first half hat trick on a flow from Kyle Long.
However, in the second half, the Terps opted for a more patient and methodical offensive approach that allowed them to capture all the momentum. Bernhardt and Fairman scored the first two goals of the period, both with excellent individual effort winning their head-to-head clashes.
“After that eighth goal from Jared, we were sort of sharing the ball,” said Wisnauskas. “We were getting away from the ball, we were making the defense work instead of just letting one guy carry the ball.”
As the third quarter progressed, the Terps’ off-the-ball movement continued to thrive as transfer graduate Griffin Brown marked his 100th career and DeMaio, Bernhardt and Maltz each added goals. Wisnauskas has been the main catalyst for this success, participating in four of the team’s last six goals in the third quarter.
With an impressive 15-7 lead entering the fourth quarter, Maryland continued to leap offensively. The Blue Jays scored a trio of goals in the final frame, but Maryland’s impressive spectacle in the third quarter proved too much to overcome.