COLLEGE PARK — Many of the nation's top women's lacrosse teams have marched into College Park during Maryland coach Cathy Reese's six-year tenure with hopes of putting a dent into the Terrapins' aura of invincibility on their home turf.
All but one had left disappointed — until Saturday.
Fifth-ranked Syracuse controlled the ball for long stretches and held-off a furious late rally by the No. 4 Terps for a 10-9 victory, snapping Maryland's 36-game home winning streak. The Orange beat the Terps for the first-time in 12 all-time attempts.
"I didn't even know about it and I don't think [the players] even knew about it until this week when people were asking questions," Reese said about the streak. "Now, we don't have to worry about it anymore. It's one less thing to think about."
Before the loss, Maryland had the fifth longest active winning streak in NCAA Division I sports behind Ohio State men's tennis (137), Florida women's tennis (99), Stanford women's basketball (79), and Kentucky men's basketball (52). Reese's only other home setback as the Terps' head coach was a 9-7 loss to Duke on May 17, 2008 in the NCAA quarterfinals.
Michelle Tumolo finished with three goals and two assists, and Devon Collins and Gabby Jaquith each had two goals for Syracuse (3-2).
The Orange tried to slow down Maryland by patiently moving the ball around on offense and not forcing quick shots. The Terps were held scoreless for the final 21 minutes of the first half and trailed 5-2 at the break.
Glaros ended the drought just 22 seconds into the second half and cut the deficit to two. Syarcuse's Collins and Maryland's Johnson traded goals, and the Orange led 6-4 with 25:16 remaining in the game. Schwarzmann pulled Maryland to within a goal three minutes later. Collins scored again with with 20:18 left, but Bria Phillips answered one minute later for Maryland, making the score 7-6.
Tumolo scored a pair of goals sandwiched between a goal by the Terps' Kelly McPartland to give Syracuse a 9-7 lead midway through the second half. After Jaquith increased the lead to three, Maryland rallied with goals by Johnson and Glaros and trailed by a goal with three minutes left.
Schwarzmann earned a free position with 25 seconds left, but her shot went over the goal, and Syracuse regained possession and ran out the clock.
"I thought it was a hard-fought game and our team just played with a lot of heart," Syracuse coach Gary Gait said. "We learned a valuable lesson playing Maryland here. This year, we're a little more athletic than we were last year and we felt we could take it to them a little bit."
Maryland opened a 2-0 lead in the opening nine minutes on goals by Schwarzmann and Glaros.Syracuse then scored the next five on goals by Jaquith, Amy Cross, Tumolo, Sarah Holden and Katie Webster.
"They are a great team and they marked our drives really well," Johnson said. "We just didn't execute when we had our opportunities. We're thinking [about] Monday practice and how hard we are going to work. We're just gonna learn from it ."Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun