Almost 7,000 Watch as No. 1 Maryland Wins the Battle at Navy

ANNAPOLIS, Md. - No. 1-ranked Maryland (8-1) utilized a 6-2 run in the second half to rally past Navy (3-8) and score an 11-8 victory over the Midshipmen Friday night at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis.

“Losing is never fun; it never feels good,” said second-year Navy head coach Rick Sowell. “But I can tell you that I've never been this proud of a team and the way they played given the odds against them. I don't think anybody gave us a chance and I think it (Navy's performance) shows a lot about our team. We talk about playing for the name on the front of our uniform and I think my guys can walk with their head up high tonight.”

The Terps jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the opening quarter, including a goal by starting midfielder Jake Bernhardt off an assist from John Haus just 43 seconds into the game.

Navy, though, not only battled its way back into the game, it took the lead after scoring five unanswered goals. A pair of Maryland penalties at the end of the first quarter put the Terps down two men and the Mids capitalized when the junior attack combo of Tucker Hull (Charlotte, N.C.) and Sam Jones (Annapolis, Md.) connected to score an extra-man goal at 14:44 in the second. Just under two minutes later, rookie T.J. Hanzsche (Berwyn, Pa.) scored the first of his two goals by sending his shot past the ankles of Maryland keeper Niko Amato.

Jones scored the equalizer at 11:29 when he beat Jake Bernhardt around the left side of the goal and gave the Mids' their first lead of the game when he slipped past starting defenseman Goran Murray and fired in his second goal of the game.

Hanzsche capped off the run, which was the second longest of the season by the Mids and longest since a 5-0 run against Detroit. The play began with junior defenseman Nik Mullen (Wading River, N.Y.) raking the ball loose from John Haus and sending the pass down the field where sophomore middie Gabe Voumard (Cape May, N.J.) found Hanzsche on the crease.

“Our offense has been working so hard, so the second quarter, it was a lot of fun to be in the game and playing well,” added Sowell. “Hopefully we can build on our effort tonight.”

After Navy's defense held Maryland in check for nearly 15 minutes, the Terps regrouped and scored on a perfectly-executed extra-man play with Haus cutting in from the left wing and Mike Chanenchuk providing the pass. Maryland tied the game for a second time when Kevin Cooper and Jay Carlson worked together to score on a transition play with 4:45 left in the half, sending the two teams into the locker room deadlocked at 5-5.

Navy took the lead for a the final time when senior midfielder Bryce Dabbs (Damascus, Md.) dodged Maryland defenseman Bryan Cole and fired his shot into the far post just 1:31 into the third quarter.

Maryland answered quickly when Chanenchuk sent his pass from the top right side of the box to Owen Blye who was hugging the crease. That goal was the first of a five-goal run by the Terps, three to end the third quarter and the first two of the final stanza. The final two of the third quarter were extra-man strikes as Maryland was successful on three of its four man-up opportunities for the game.

Trailing 10-6 with 5:59 to go in the game, Navy had plenty of fight remaining as junior midfielder Pat Durkin (Germantown, Md.) stuck his lone shot of the game. The Terps, however, answered just 49 seconds later when Chanenchuk went high to low on Navy senior goalie Nolan Hickey (Chaminade, N.Y.) for his fourth point of the evening.

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