March 16, 2013
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Despite dominating the stat sheet and holding the upper hand for most of the contest, two three-goal stretches by Maryland in the second and third quarters made the difference as Villanova fell to the top-ranked Terps 10-7 on Saturday evening. With the loss, Villanova fell to 1-5 on the season while No. 1 Maryland improved to 6-0.
In a game that featured four tied scores with the Wildcats down by one at 8-7 with 8:54 left in the contest, the Terps pulled away for the victory with the final two goals of the game after Villanova gambled by pulling goalkeeper Reed Carlson (Arnold, Md.) out of net to double-up on defense. Maryland's Mike Chanenchuk notched the final score of the match on an open net to solidify the game at 10-7 in favor of the Terps.
Villanova led the contest to begin the game, taking the early 2-1 lead after the first quarter off of goals from freshman John Kluh (Lothian, Md.) and senior Jack Rice (Baltimore, Md.) with an assist by junior Kevin O'Neil (Cockeysville, Md.).
The Wildcats would hold their biggest lead of the game with 14:31 remaining in the half after O'Neil notched a score on a man-up opportunity to give VU a 3-1 advantage, but the Terps fought back with three straight scores from Jay Carlson and Jake Bernhardt to close the stanza up by one at 4-3.
Following intermission, senior Max Hart (Bethesda, Md.) tied the game at 4-4 after connecting on another man-up opportunity at the 13:48 mark and again at 5-5 with 8:49 remaining in the third quarter, but another Maryland run with scores from Owen Blye, John Haus and Carlson matched the biggest Terp lead of the game with an 8-5 advantage with 16:12 remaining.
Sophomore Christian Kolderup (Darien, Conn.) connected for the first score of his career on a transition play to trim the Wildcat deficit 8-6 while O'Neil gave the Wildcats a great chance with another score with 8:54 on the clock to close the gap at 8-7, but the Wildcats couldn't find the equalizer as two Maryland goals closed out the contest at 10-7.
In a great defensive effort, Villanova's close defensemen in juniors John LoCascio (Fairfield, N.J.), Chris Piccirilli (Davidsonville, Md.) and Christopher Conroy (Chatham, N.J.) combined for nine ground balls and seven caused turnovers. In his first career start, Reed tallied 10 saves and made several point-blank stops to keep the Wildcats alive. Junior faceoff specialist Thomas Croonquist (North Caldwell, N.J.) tallied seven ground balls while winning 10-of-19 attempts from midfield.
Villanova, in the midst of a five-game stretch against opponents ranked in the Top-20 of the national polls, will begin BIG EAST play next Saturday when they host No. 7 Syracuse in Villanova Stadium. Game time is slated for 7 p.m.