Navy vs. Johns Hopkins
April 20, 2002
The Game Story:
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Junior Adam Doneger scored his second goal of the game with 5:52 remaining in the fourth quarter to break an 8-8 tie and lift second-ranked Johns Hopkins to a come-from-behind 9-8 win over 14th-ranked Navy before 15,271 (third-largest crowd in NCAA regular-season lacrosse history) at Navy Marine Corps Stadium Saturday afternoon. The win is the 28th straight for Johns Hopkins against Navy, while the Blue Jays also ran their winning streak to six games on the year and improve to 9-1. Navy falls to 7-5 and had its two-game winning streak snapped.

Navy led 5-3 after Greg Conklin's unassisted goal with 5:06 remaining in the third quarter before Hopkins mounted its comeback. Freshman Vince Smith scored the first goal of his career off an assist from sophomore Conor Ford with 2:53 remaining and Ford struck just 15 seconds later on a feed from freshman Kyle Barrie to tie the game at 5-5. Doneger gave the Blue Jays their first lead since early in the first quarter when he blasted a 15-yard shot past Navy goalie Jon Higdon to make it 6-5 with just 39 seconds remaining in the third quarter. After the Blue Jays controlled the ensuing faceoff, sophomore Joe McDermott pushed the lead to 7-5 as he beat his defender into the zone on a substitution and junior Bobby Benson found him streaking in from the right side for an open look at the goal.

The Midshipmen tied the game with back-to-back goals early in the fourth quarter as Dan Eddy and Eddie McKinnon both scored in a span of just 1:30 to tie the game at 7-7. Both goals were assisted by Dan Neverosky. Boland found Benson on the crease at the 9:19 mark to give the Blue Jays an 8-7 lead, but Conklin's second goal of the game, off a nice feed from Dave Pittard, at the 7:40 mark forced the fifth and final tie of the game. After working the ball behind the goal, Smith found Doneger alone up top and fired a 12-yard rocket past Higdon for what proved to be the game-winner.

Navy controlled much of the action in the first half and carried a 4-2 lead into halftime. Johns Hopkins freshman Kyle Harrison sandwiched a pair of goals around tallies by Navy's Kelly Nash and Thomas Morris in the first quarter, before McKinnon made it 3-2 with a goal at the 2:14 mark of the first quarter and 4-2 with another tally at the 14:39 mark of the second. Navy put 13 of its 17 first-half shots on goal and could have led by more if not for the standout play of Johns Hopkins goalie Nick Murtha, who posted nine saves in the first half.

Benson's first goal less than four minutes into the second half pulled Hopkins within 4-3, but neither team scored again until Conklin's goal over five minutes later made it 5-3. That set the stage for Hopkins' rally, which helped secure the Blue Jays' fifth one-goal win of the season. Since the beginning of the 2001 season, Hopkins has played 10 one-goal games and has posted an 8-2 record in those 10 games.

Benson and Ford led the Blue Jays with three points apiece as Benson scored two goals and added one assist, while Ford had a goal and two assists. Doneger and Harrison chipped in with two goals, while Smith added the one goal and one assist. The two points for Smith were the first two points of his career. Boland added a pair of assists, while Murtha posted 16 saves in goal for the Blue Jays. Hopkins won 14-of-21 faceoffs with Harrison winning 12-of-16.

Navy was led by McKinnon's three goals, while Conklin added two goals and Neverosky posted the two assists. Higdon made seven saves in goal for the Mids, who outshot Hopkins, 29-27, but lost the ground ball battle, 35-32.