Fans that came to Georgetown University today were greeted with great weather, an impressive facility, and two teams that clearly do not like each other. Last year, Georgetown’s season ended in a heartbreaking overtime loss against Maryland in the NCAA Quarterfinals and the two teams played a very physical early season game in College Park. Today’s contest followed suit - it was a bruising game; the third quarter took about 40 minutes of real time on account of twelve penalties and a scuffle that nearly turned into a bench clearing brawl.
The Terps controlled the tempo throughout the game on route to a 10-4 victory, led by the Ritz brothers who tallied 4 goals a piece. The Hoyas seemed to be suffering from an Andy Corno hangover, as the Terps dominated the faceoff X, winning thirteen of eighteen draws. Dave Cottle’s offensive was cruelly efficient, especially the man-up unit which went 5/8, taking advantage of many avoidable Georgetown penalties.
The early parts of the game were all G’Town. The Terps seemed a little lost in the first quarter with the offense looking out of sync and committing a few very sloppy turnovers. The Hoyas drew first blood with a goal by sophomore Brendan Cannon. A few minutes later, the Terrapins evened the game with their first EMO goal from sophomore Max Ritz. The Hoyas took the lead off a nifty set-piece on an out of bounds play with only 13 seconds left in the quarter.
Whatever was said in the Maryland huddle after the first quarter, it worked. David Tamberrino won all four faceoffs in the 2nd quarter, allowing a very methodical Maryland offense to score three unanswered goals and take a 4-2 lead at the half. The efficient quarter was highlighted by a tremendous unassisted goal by senior midi Michael Hartofolis, who knifed through the middle of the Hoya defense and scored a diving left-handed shot. Defensively, Maryland looked like a different team, taking away any interior passing lanes and forcing the Hoyas to settle for outside shots that were smothered by Harry Alford.
The third quarter was the Ritz show, as brothers Xander and Max scored all five goals in the period. However, the excellent play of the Maryland offense was overshadowed by ugliness on the field. The Hoyas were visibly distraught at some questionable no-calls and questionable flags by the officials. They had legitimate complaints, but the players mishandled it and completely lost their composure. Discipline went out the window, with the Hoyas taking terrible shots and worse penalties.
This culminated at the midway point of the quarter, when a late hit by Georgetown drove a Maryland player into the Georgetown bench. Both teams rushed into the box area, pushing and jawing at each other amidst coaches and officials trying to quell the situation. Punches were clearly thrown, and ultimately the refs only sent a single player from each team to the box after breaking it up. This wasn’t nearly harsh enough considering the teams almost broke into a bench clearing brawl. Unsurprisingly, the rest of the quarter was marred with penalties from both sides.
Fortunately, level heads prevailed in the fourth quarter and there was no more combat, on or off the field. The Terps extended their unanswered goals to nine early in the period, when senior midi Brendan Healy dumped a nice feed into Max Ritz. After that the Terp offense went into stall mode, taking the air out of the ball and time off the clock. Georgetown would break their scoreless drought midway through the 4th, when Trevor Casey scored off a Pete Cannon feed on a man-up opportunity. Georgetown defenseman Reyn Garnett scored the last goal of the game in the final minute with an impressive transition finish [particularly for a pole].
Ultimately, it was a very efficient Maryland team that controlled the time of possession, the faceoff X, and the pace of the game that came out victorious. Coach Cottle and his staff have to be happy with this road victory and can start gearing up for the huge ACC matchup at Duke next weekend. Georgetown looked strong early, but really broke down in the third quarter. You can be certain that Coach Urick will get on their case for losing their heads and have his team prepared for their ECAC opener next week against St. John’s.
Georgetown vs. Maryland