September 25, 2023


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Maryland men's lacrosse wins the National Championship

Maryland men’s lacrosse wins the National Championship

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East Hartford, Connecticut – Maryland hasn’t lost a men’s lacrosse game since Memorial Day 2021, so the Terrapins weren’t about to let another season spoil their last game.

The top-seeded Terps completed an undefeated season on Monday by fending off seventh seed Cornell, 9-7, to claim their fourth NCAA title for the program just one year after spoiling their perfect record in a National Championship game in the same field.

“I’ve never felt this way in my life,” said senior defender Brett Makar. “This kind of feeling is really indescribable. I tear up just thinking about how much it took me to get back here.”

In front of 22,184 at Rentschler Field, Maryland goalkeeper Logan McEnany made 17 saves to end an impressive season. He was named NCAA Player of the Year. Anthony DiMaio – Last link in the list to Former title team Terps in 2017 He scored four goals and one assist.

Maryland (18-0) claimed their second title in seven title games under coach John Tillman and became the first undefeated champion since Virginia in 2006. The terps’ 18 wins are the largest for an unbeaten team in NCAA history.

Striker Logan Wisnauskas finally broke a record in his last game, capturing a one-season record in Maryland. He had two more goals and assists on Monday and finished the season with 103 points, surpassing Jared Bernhardt’s 99 mark set last season.

The Terps have won 35 of the 36 games going back to the 2020 season, with only defeat looming Last year’s championship match against Virginia.

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CJ Kirst scored twice for the Big Red (14-5), which became the first Maryland State team to keep under 10 goals since Johns Hopkins in the 2019 Big Ten. The two-goal winning margin also matches the season’s youngest team in the Terps.

“It was the hardest game we’ve had all year,” Tillman said.

It was a fitting end to the tournament for Maknani, the third-year player who took charge early in the 2020 season that was cut short by the pandemic and improved to 35-1 as a start. He scored the highest level of his career with 19 saves Defeating Princeton in the semi-finals on Saturday 13-8then handicapped Cornell for most of Monday’s games.

In four pre-season games, McNaney made 61 saves and allowed 25 goals with a 709 save percentage.

“I knew I just had to go in and see the ball and save the ball,” McEnany said.

Crest Cornell’s first goal put Cornell ahead 1-0, making this only the fifth game of the season that Maryland has been behind. But the trops soon adjusted the situation.

DeMaio, the sixth-year-old behind in the 2017 Maryland title, scored a natural hat-trick to close out the first quarter that put Maryland ahead 4-1, then set up Owen Pribelski’s long-pole goal from a quick start two minutes into the second. .

Terps led 7-2 at the end of the first half, and Wisnauskas helped expand the advantage early in the second half, scoring once and assisting Jonathan Donville’s goal to make it 9-2.

“They’re doing a lot of great things on the bar, but we thought we had the potential to beat this team,” Cornell coach Conor Buczyk said. “However, they were fantastic. They managed our attack well. I thought our defense played as best it could.”

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Maryland, who was seven years ahead, tried to hold out while tired after a quick turnaround from Saturday. The Terps finished 22 conversions to the highest level of the season and missed five times, but the cushion was enough to avoid a lot of tension in the final minutes.

Cornell’s John Biatelli scored with 35.3 seconds left to cut the Big Reds lead to two, but the Tripps won the encounter that followed, and year five leader Bubba Firman ran out of time to set off the celebration.

“We expected it to be difficult and obviously we built a little cushion and it got stuck,” Tillman said. “I’m not sure what would have happened if there had been another quarter.”

Maryland would certainly prefer not to consider the possibility of things ending like last year, when they suffered a massive 17-16 loss. That setback prompted the Terps to take a hands-on approach to every game this season, and their milestones were met with muted celebration — until Monday, when cheerful players created a paper cut-out version of Snow Angels after the last bell.

A team that got through most of the season without many serious challenges has sparked debate about its place in history. It’s an impossible debate to settle for certain rule changes, such as the advent of the shot clock, and equipment developments.

But one thing is indisputable: Maryland’s NCAA Awards from 1973, 1975, and 2017 have some company.

“Whether people want to say we are the best team ever, we are national champions,” Di Maio said. “And that’s all that matters.”

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