The Georgetown Hoyas got saved by a Nick Miaritis prayer of a shot with under 20 seconds to pull out a 7-6 victory over Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights tied the game with only 26 seconds to go bringing the home crowd to its feet. The jubilation wouldn’t last. Georgetown won the ensuing face off and called timeout. Miaritis started at the midfield line and headed straight toward the cage. He cut to his left as he approached the top of the box. His defenseman pushed out and got enough of him to make him stumble, but Miaritis fired an off balance shot on the run with his top hand choked up too high. The result was an awkward bounce shot that hit the ground ten yards out from the goal. The off speed bounce shot fooled Rutgers goalie Greg Havalchak. He went down and the ball floated over him just underneath the crossbar. It was one of those shots where it looked like he could of saved it two or three times by the time it got to him, but he didn’t. It was a tough way to end an otherwise superb defensive battle.
Georgetown dominated just about every facet of the game, but Rutgers was able to ropa dope enough to give themselves a chance late in the game. Face offs, rides and clears, man up/man down, and time of possession were completely skewed in Georgetown’s favor. Rutgers, however, was content to limit the Hoyas inside opportunities and rely on their all star goalie to make up the rest. The result was good because 7 goals against with the amount of defense the Knights played was a true accomplishment. Havalchak’s counterpart Rich D’Andrea was one goal better making most of his best saves in the third quarter. D’Andrea also thwarted at least three attempts by picking off passes.
On the other side of the field Rutgers didn’t find their way until half way through the third quarter. The Knights inverted their middies on just about every possession. Georgetown’s answer was a defense they call diamond. When a Rutgers midfielder got a short stick behind they went into a zone and sent long stick Andrew Braziel to double. When he got there the defensive middie would play defense out in front. This had the knights in a tizzy for most of the game, but once they figured it out it changed the complexion of the game. Down 6-3 with 10:24 to go in the third they started to click. As soon as Braziel went a Rutgers player would pop behind for a quick outlet and then move the ball out front immediately to take advantage of the slides. Georgetown stayed in their Diamond defense, (and why not it worked all game)but Rutgers clearly had its number late in the game.
Rutgers actually controlled the opening face off, but that would turn out to be a rarity. Chris Doctor tried to back in on net and squibbed off a weak shot. D’Andrea broke Georgetown middie Brian Young for the clear and Gtown’s first offensive possession. Standout midfielder Walid Hajj went to work immediately, but defensive middie Devon Britts deflected his jump shop. GU in bounded the ball and moved it back to Hajj at the restraining line to Havalchak’s right. Hajj faked outside and dipped into the middle for a right handed crank from 15 yards out that beat Havalchak high in the left corner, 1-0. Georgetown got possession off the face, but Alex Rachon picked Neal Goldman with a nice over the head check before drawing a push. RU cleared and Rutgers middie Micheal Coomber inverted immediately. Coomber drove hard to his right from X, but turned back when he didn’t like what he saw. He gave it a second try and was successful. He drove up about 7 yards past goal line extended before turning inside and bouncing it past D’Andrea, 1-1.
Rutgers got the first Man-up on a penalty during the ensuing face off. The knights were working it around the horn when D’Andrea stepped up and snagged a pass intended for X. That was the end of that man-up and the Knights never really improved on it on their other chances. GU cleared, but tuned the ball over on a crease violation. Rutgers failed to clear when Daniel Rauch couldn’t handle a pass along the restraining line drawing an in and out call. The game broke down for a spell with both teams coughing it up at the midfield, but senior defensemen Joseph Duncan sprung RU middie Devon Britts for a fast break. Britts got wheels and took advantage of a late slide. At 6:49 of the first he came down the middle slightly to his right and beat D’Andrea with a bounce shot along far left pipe, 2-1.
GTown took the next face and atayed on offense for eons. Tom O’Toole was shutting off GTown attackman Neal Goldman. Meamwhile, RU’s Dan Achatz got a penalty for flipping Peter Cannon’s helmet up as seen in pictures. Georgetown capitalized on a fluky kind of goal. Sean Denihan fed Neal Goldman from X. Golman took a hard over hand shot from the lefty wing that was probably headed far side before it got deflected and beat Havalchack along the short side right pipe, 2-2. It’s rare in lacrosse that the ball retains velocity after being deflected, especially from so far out. Georgetown kept the ball on offense for most of the first quarter, but Rutgers D held tight and did not allow quality opportunities.
GTown’s Brodie Merril tripped up Sean Battoni on the face off to put RU back on the man-up. Powless got a shot off, but the rebound nearly went out of bounds before GU picked it up and cleared it. Trevor Casey tried to rip a shot from the outside, but Havalchack snagged it easily. RU failed to clear, but Georgetown through it out of bounds. The knights failed to clear again.and this time it cost them. At the 12:26 mark of the second quarter 6’3” 195 pound Garrett Wilson drove from the top left of Havalchack. He backed his man in until he got within striking distance, then rolled inside and snapped one past Havalchack,3-2. Rutgers inability to clear led to another goal only moments later. At 11:23 RU coughed the ball up on an attempted clear leading to Kyle Morin smelling Havalchacks breath while faking low and shooting high. Inexplicably Havalchack stuffed it, but the rebound bounce into Hajj’s stick for an empty netter while the goalie was still trying to locate it, 4-2. Gu controlled the face and stayed on the attack until Morin stepped in the crease to set up a successful RU clear. At this point GTown was running their diamond defense and had RU running scared. It almost looked like a game of tag as RU players were running away from the goal and GTown defenders. Finally, at 7:52 Austin Rodgers got enough breathing room from X to hit a tightly covered Jamie Lovejoy cutting across the crease for a quick stick goal, 4-3.
Gu won the next face, but Rutgers got the ball on the ground and in the scrum Hajj slashed a RU defensemen across the thigh when the ball was 5 yards away from him. In classic fashion, Hajj argued the call to no avail. It didn’t matter. Rutgers was woefully inept with the extra man and didn’t even get a shot. Somehow Rutgers held on and ended the half only one goal behind, but they were playing a ton of defense.
Ru took a penalty on the opening face when Sean Battoni was whistled for tripping. GTown worked the ball around for a Hajj jump shot that Havalchack snared before sending Achatz on his way. Achatz fed defenseman Kyle Ruebling who did well to step the ball in the box on the offensive side. RU attackman Leif Bloomquist got off a nice waist high crank, but D’Andrea made a strong save on it. GU cleared and set up the next goal at the 12:05 mark of the third. Garrett Wilson again showed his strength and power. It was a simple lefty sweep with a power cradle followed by a low and away shot along the far right pipe low, 5-3. Havalchack made a strong save against Denihan on the next GU possession and sent Britts to the races again. This time Britts tried to pass to X and D’Andrea snagged it. As so often happens in sports a missed opportunity often leads to a goal the other way. GU cleared it down to Goldman who was in the lefty wing spot. Wes trice was the fifth attacker down the field and uncovered. Goldman gave it to him for a hop, skip, and a jump crank shot from just inside the box. It beat Havalchack high for a 6-3 lead.
GU won the face and got called for a stall. GU were still driving the net, but there clearly was no urgency to score. RU’s Daniel Rauch took a Peter Cannon rifle in the gut and then cleared. The Knights came alive on this possession. They moved the ball quickly and got some great opportunities. First Jamie Lovejoy tried to lay out in front of the goal along the crease, but his shot was deflected wide. Then D’Andrea stoned Matt Apel from point blank.as he was cutting from X. GU cleared and Garrett Wilson was really feeling his oats. He tried to beat Havalchack from the outside with a high shot taking one step. Havalchak made the save on the exuberant freshman. RU cleared and D’Andrea came up big again. Rutgers had officially cracked the code on GTown’s defense, but couldn’t solve the D’Andrea puzzle.
GTown controlled the face to start the fourth, but Dmiddie Achatz snagged a pass along the restraining line. Achatz took off to set up a classic 4 vs 3 break. He hit Bloomquist across the top of the box. Bloomquist took two steps in from the high righty spot and blew a waist high shot past D’Andrea, 6-4. The comeback was on. RU drew a penalty on there next offensive possession. Defenseman John Trapp doubled John Flanagan, but his over zealous check was called a slash. No matter, RU continued to struggle on the Man-up. Chris doctor tried to force a pass through a defender and GTown cleared it. GTown got called for a stall again. Eventually Andrew Conforti blocked a Nick Miaritis shot with his body and RU cleared. The Knights really poured it on with three quality chances that all missed the net. Finally Trapp made a nice check on Flanagan to get the ball on the ground. GU cleared, but Daniel Rauch picked off a cross crease pass and sent Britts to clear it. They set up a Powless shot that sailed wide and then a Tim White crank low to high that D”Andrea bested. GU cleared and in transition Miaritis dinged the crossbar. Hajj in bounded from the side line with an all or nothing move to the crease. Havalchack got a thigh on it and Hajj got a crease violation for his efforts. With 2:32 left RU made it a one goal game. From X RU moved the ball around the horn after Braziel came out. It went to the righty wing to up top to the high lefty spot. From there Chris Doctor backed in before turning to the outside and taking a right handed shot across his body to bounce it off the far left pipe 5 inches off the ground, 6-5.
RU got the next possession, but coughed it up. GU cleared and called time out with 1:11 left. RU came out of the time out doubling the ball with Havalchack covering a man. It worked, but an errant pass by Darien Ohiokhepai gave it back to RU. RU eventually got the ball back when Achatz picked off another pass and cleared. RU worked it to X where Delby Powless fed Tom O’Toole cutting right through the heart. His waist high shot made it 6-6 with 26 seconds to go.
GU won the next face and called time out to set up Miaritis’ afore mentioned game winning goal, 7-6.
|Delby Powless||(0, 1)|
|Dan Achatz||(0, 1)|
|Tom Otoole||(1, 0)|
|Jamie Lovejoy||(1, 0)|
|Chris Doctor||(1, 0)|
|Michael Coomber||(1, 0)|
|Devin Britts||(1, 0)|
|Leif Blomquist||(1, 0)|
|Austin Rodgers||(0, 1)|
|Greg Havalchak||7 (0.500)|