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NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Tournament 2017: Maryland beats Bryant, 13-10, in 1st round

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A strong third quarter was enough for the top-seeded Terps.

NCAA Lacrosse: Men's Championship - Maryland Terrapins vs. Denver Pioneers Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Maryland men’s lacrosse’s seniors carried the team to a 13-10 victory over Bryant in the Terps’ final game in Maryland Stadium this season, as they advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

The Bulldogs hung around for awhile, going into the half down only two, at 6-4. But Maryland dominated the Bulldogs early in the second half, squashing any hopes of an upset.

Attackmen Tim Rotanz and Colin Heacock got the scoring underway Sunday afternoon in College Park, each netting a pair of goals in the game’s first 15 minutes. Brett Baker and former Terp Tom Forsberg got the Bulldogs on the board, keeping their squad within striking distance. Heacock’s second goal of the game came with just three seconds left in the quarter, swinging momentum back in the Terps’ favor.

Dylan Maltz and Rotanz traded goals with Bryant’s Ryan Sharpe and Tucker James in an otherwise uneventful second quarter. Isaiah Davis-Allen was responsible for the game’s first extra-man opportunity, a cross check that led to Bryant’s fourth goal.

Maryland finally cracked the code to Bryant’s unusual 3-3 zone in the third quarter, scoring five goals. Matt Rambo and Jared Bernhardt joined the party at the start of the second half. Rambo either scored or assisted on all of the Terps’ third-quarter goals, scoring two and assisting the other three. The Terps flexed their muscles on defense, denying Bryant a second extra-man goal late in the quarter before going on to score two of their own to extend their lead to 11-5.

The Terps’ five-goal outburst in the third quarter led to a goalie change for Bryant. Viper Scheele relieved James Werner for the final 15. Maryland scored the first two goals of the fourth, stretching the lead to 13-5, and the rout appeared to be on.

Five straight goals for Bryant made the game interesting, but in the end, it was too little, too late. The right goalpost put a stop to the Bulldogs’ torrid late run with just under a minute left, and the Terps ran out the rest of the clock.

Maryland will play No. 8 Albany in a regular-season rematch next Sunday in the quarterfinals in Newark, Delaware.

Three things to know

  1. Maryland’s stars mean business. Rambo, Maltz, Rotanz and Heacock combined for 10 of the Terps’ 15 goals. Rotanz has been one of Maryland’s best players lately, and he kept his foot on the gas with five goals on the day. After experiencing so much heartbreak in the past three years, the veterans have a shot at redemption.
  2. Austin Henningsen held his own at the faceoff. It’s been a rough spring for the sophomore faceoff man, but he bounced back in the first round, winning 52 percent of the draws, taking the pressure of Maryland’s defense and putting the ball in the hands of its potent offense.
  3. Dan Morris was solid in the crease. Morris stopped 55 percent of Bryant’s shots on goal in his first-ever NCAA Tournament start. Maryland’s defense has been great all season, but much of their postseason success will rely on Morris stopping shots.