College Lacrosse

No. 5 Terps use 7-0 run to earn 11-8 victory over No. 18 Rutgers in men's lacrosse

COLLEGE PARK — For the third consecutive game, the Maryland men's lacrosse team found itself flailing around and getting bogged down into a nip-and-tuck affair in the second half. And for the third straight game, the Terps persevered.

Facing a 6-3 deficit early in the third quarter, No. 5 Maryland scored seven straight goals to overcome No. 18 Rutgers, 11-8, in a pivotal game in the Big Ten Conference before an announced 4,101 at Maryland Stadium on Saturday.


Much as they did in an 8-7 win at Michigan on April 2 and an 11-10 overtime decision at No. 15 Penn State on Sunday, the Terps dug deep and tapped into a reservoir of resolve to catch and eventually outpace the Scarlet Knights. Senior defenseman Matt Dunn credited the program's slate of games against opponents like No. 1 Notre Dame, No. 2 Yale and No. 7 Albany with toughening the team's mindset.

"We've obviously played a very tough schedule against a lot of good teams and a lot of these games, we really focus on not riding the roller coaster, the wave that is [in] the game against a good team where you have the ups and downs," said Dunn, a Towson resident and Loyola Blakefield graduate. "So if you look at a lot of these games, rather than get caught up in the moment of the momentum swings with teams making runs, I think a big focus for the last couple weeks has been to stay consistent and stay positive and worry about the next play. I think that's been huge in kind of these last couple weeks. Just the way we've gotten off to slow starts and then just being able to stay positive and focused on the next play and not get overwhelmed by a lot of those plays has allowed us to stay focused throughout the game rather than kind of focus on the negative things that have already occurred."


Another factor was the play of the starting attack of juniors Dylan Maltz, Matt Rambo and Colin Heacock. Maltz scored a career-high four goals, Rambo had a team-best five points on three goals and two assists and Heacock scored three times to help Maryland collect its eighth straight victory and improve to 9-2 overall and 3-0 in the conference. The win gives the Terps sole possession of first place in the Big Ten.

The trio was especially critical during a 7-0 run that turned a 6-3 deficit early in the third quarter into a 10-6 advantage midway through the final period. Maltz scored three goals, Rambo contributed two goals and one assist, and Heacock scored twice.

"I think that Matty and Colin are two of the best attackmen in the country," Maltz said. "I think emotionally, they helped us get to where we needed to get."

The Terps dominated shots (44-30), ground balls (32-19) and faceoffs (15-of-23, all from freshman Will Bonaparte who was playing for injured freshman Austin Henningsen), but it was Rutgers that took a 4-3 lead into halftime.

The Scarlet Knights (9-3, 2-1) got goals from sophomore midfielder Chad Tolliver and freshman attackman Josh Jordan to build a three-goal cushion with 12:05 left in the third quarter.

That's when the Terps' attack assumed control. Heacock dodged around the right post and curled back to the doorstep to score with 10:31 remaining. Rambo followed with a curl around the right post and a goal with 8:11 left.

Maryland knotted the score at 6-6 with crisp passing in transition. The ball went from redshirt senior long-stick midfielder Greg Danseglio to junior short-stick defensive midfielder Isaiah Davis-Allen to sophomore short-stick defensive midfielder Adam DiMillo to Maltz for a shot from the left wing with 6:17 remaining. Then Maltz converted a feed from Rambo to give the Terps a 7-6 lead with 4:47 left.

Heacock opened the fourth quarter with a curl around the left post and a shot that bounced into the top right corner with 12:28 remaining. Senior midfielder Pat Young found Maltz in the slot with 11:03 left, and Rambo capped the 7-0 run with a shot from the right alley with 7:27 remaining to give Maryland a 10-6 advantage.


Coach John Tillman was pleased to see the team overcome a slow start that may have been aided by the pomp and circumstance of honoring 14 seniors before the contest.

"I thought we were a little anxious, and we just couldn't seem to settle down a little bit in the first half," Tillman said. "And then I thought we finally got our way past that. Obviously, at 6-3, that wasn't where we wanted to be, but credit to the kids. They all stayed positive. We kept working and working, and that little flurry in the third quarter really got us. Kind of got some momentum and got the bounce back in our step."