Strong final period lifts Hopkins Hoyas earn respect in 15-10 loss


For three quarters, it looked as if Johns Hopkins was in danger of suffering one of the biggest lacrosse upsets in its history.

Unranked Georgetown, facing Hopkins for the first time, led the Blue Jays by a goal going into the final period.

But Hopkins -- ranked No. 5 in The Baltimore Sun poll -- scored seven times in the final 15 minutes and won, 15-10, before a slim crowd of 511 at Homewood.

The game had been postponed Saturday because of the TTC snowstorm. Hopkins maintenance crews removed snow from the artificial-turf field about two hours before the faceoff.

For Hopkins (2-1), this was another case of a slow start that kept the team in trouble most of the game. On Wednesday, Hopkins needed a strong second half to beat Division III Washington College, 24-14.

For Georgetown (1-1), this was a day to showcase a program coach Dave Urick has been building for four years. The Hoyas gained new respect.

"I'm proud of our kids. They did a great job," said Urick, who won 10 Division III championships at Hobart. "We wanted to make a good showing in our first appearance at Homewood, but more than that, we wanted to win the game."

While Hopkins looked sloppy and uninspired as the visitors from Washington left the field with a 6-5 halftime lead, Georgetown played aggressively at both ends of the field and earned the lead (which increased to 8-6 early in the third quarter).

Hopkins tied it at 9-9 on a goal by freshman Milford Marchant 1:56 into the fourth quarter, then went ahead to stay 10-9 on a goal by junior Alex Wadkovsky.

After Hopkins made it 11-9 on a score by Terry Riordan, who had six goals and an assist for the day, Wadkovsky added an additional score to make it 12-9 with five minutes to play.

Hopkins scored the last three goals of the game, two by Riordan, one by Marchant.

Brian Piccola had three goals and three assists for the winners.

Georgetown's scoring was led by junior Rich Michel, from Huntington, N.Y., who had three goals. Doug Madden, a junior from Manlius, N.Y., scored a pair for the Hoyas.

"It's a 60-minute game," said Hopkins coach Tony Seaman. "Whoever is ahead after 60 minutes wins the game.

"Georgetown is not bad. Everybody talks about parity in Division I. Well, Georgetown has good talent and played well. Dave Urick has had four years to give scholarships and build the program. The Georgetown goaltender [sophomore Jim Coale] was the difference between a 25-10 game and a 15-10 game."

Coale had eight saves, many from in close. Riordan got a half-dozen shots past him.

"I made some bad shots," said Riordan. "I kept hitting him in the body instead of hitting the net. Coach Seaman gave me personally the third degree at halftime. But Coale is an unbelievable goalie."

The unsung hero for the Jays as they came on in the final period was Steve Vecchione, who got seven faceoffs.

"We face-off by committee," said Georgetown's Urick. "We used four or five guys. Vecchione is strong. He makes a lot of difference."

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