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Maryland's loss to Virginia "inadvertent"?

Just finished watching the ESPN2 broadcast of the Terps’ 10-9 loss to the Cavaliers in seven overtimes, and no announcement was made (or maybe I didn't hear it over the roars of the crowd) in the press box above Klockner Stadium in Charlottesville, Va., that Grant Catalino’s goal in the first overtime period was negated by what is known in lacrosse circles as an "inadvertent whistle."

Let me set the scene. On the faceoff to open overtime, Maryland sophomore midfielder Dan Burns scooped up a loose ball and after racing into the box, passed the ball to Catalino, who was standing to Burns’ left. The sophomore attackman whipped the ball past Virginia sophomore goalkeeper Adam Ghitelman and inside the right post to give the No. 9 Terps a 10-9 victory and knock the No. 1 Cavaliers from the ranks of the undefeated.

Simple, right? Wrong.

Moments before Catalino unleashed his blast, one of three referees officiating the contest blew his whistle, thereby ceasing play and ruling Catalino’s score dead. After a conversation with the other officials and Maryland coach Dave Cottle, the Terps are not charged with a timeout and are given possession near the sidelines. And still no goal.

In a phone conversation earlier today, Terps coach Dave Cottle confirmed that the official mistakenly thought he heard someone from the Maryland bench request a timeout.

"The ref told me he messed up," Cottle said. "It’s a bad mistake, and he’s human, too. There are a lot of things that we can control out there, but we can’t control that. We just have to focus in on the things that we can control and try to get ready for Navy [on Friday]."

Cottle theorizes that the official, who was standing in front of the Virginia side of the field and at least 20 yards away from the Terps bench, heard someone call a timeout and assumed the request came from Maryland. Cottle asserts that if he – and he emphasized that he is the lone person to ask a referee for a timeout – had called a timeout, he would have asked the official who was trailing the play.

Cottle said he told the officiating crew that he reserves the right to file an official protest and that the team plans to send film of the incident to the body that governs the referees and the NCAA. But he also acknowledged that he has no expectations on a reversal.

"I don’t know if there’s ever been a game that has been changed – in any sport," Cottle said. "I don’t know what’s done. … We’re going to send the film and see where it goes. But we’ve already started on Navy. And quite honestly, the more you cry about it, the more you look like you’re a sore loser. So from our perspective, it was disappointing, it was something that shouldn’t have occurred, but at the same end, we have to move on."

Cottle said he was proud of his players for continuing to play and refraining from being frustrated by the official’s call. He also defended the referee in question.

"He made a mistake. That wasn’t larceny or anything like that," Cottle said. "That was a man-made mistake, and I think he feels sick about it. So from our standpoint, we feel as though we probably deserved a better fate, but there were some mistakes that we can change and improve on, and we’ve got to get ready for this Navy team."

Posted by Edward Lee at 5:11 PM | | Comments (10)
Categories: Maryland


Wow, Dave Cottle is being extremely magnanimous. Good for him. As a fan, I was outraged. But Cottle did everything he could do to win the game -- which meant quickly putting the ref's mistake behind and focusing on stopping UVA and trying to score. It's a real shame that karma didn't lead to a Terp victory. Maybe we'll get at least one more shot at them (ACC Tournament and/or NCAA Tournament). Sure would be nice to get revenge when the stakes are even higher!

The timeout was a lame call on the official's part. But, then again, one of Maryland's goals was a double-poster that clearly did not cross the goal line all the way. The ball must cross all the way across an imaginary plane formed by the back of the goal posts. If that had not counted, the game ends at regulation 9-8.

Overall, a great game that was marred by a few not so stellar calls. As a UVA fan, I've got to say I'm not looking forward to playing Maryland again - they will be tough to beat twice in a season.

To me, the biggest thing i saw in that game was the need to reform the OT rules....why a 4-minute OT? Its sudden a regular quarter. All the 4 minutes did was allow each coach a chance to milk the clock and call a timeout after each change of possession. Put it in the hands of the players....let them play it out....that turned info 3 long breaks for every 4 minutes of action. I thought i actually got boring.

It's horrible to lose a game of this importance because of a bad call by an official. But as all athletes know, you have to not only beat the other team, you have to beat the officials. The silver lining will be if the league can find a way to prevent this from happening again.

The refs made a bad call; it's that simple. Even so, the Terps had 7 overtimes to put one shot in the net. And they didn't do it. the time, I could'nt stop screaming at the TV...but I got over it pretty quickly. On the whole, the game provided a valuable bit of information--that the Terps match up well with, and can play the best team in NCAA lax to a standstill at their place.If they can stash that nugget away with the proper perspective, then they will be a very dangerous team, come tourney-time.

Glad to see the coach taking the high road.

Lots of talk on Lax Power about one of the officials being a UVA grad, although he was not the one who mad the TO call. Not to go CSI here but could have someone on the Virginia bench called the time-out to stop the play?
Sorry, I love the conspiracy theories.

A terrible officiated game. I forgot about the controversial Md goal, but the officiating seemed to start going against the Terps at the 5 min left of regulation time, after VA tied the score at 9.---Illegal time-out by Va, other bad calls. I can't remember all of them. Official #42 needs to be reprimanded.

This for Dwayne. The rule states that a coach can't call more than 1 time-out during each O.T. period.

Coach Cottle handled the situation very professionally and that is to commended.

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About Faceoff
Faceoff is The Baltimore Sun's blog devoted to college and high school lacrosse. Faceoff contributors include Sun reporters Edward Lee, Mike Preston and Katherine Dunn.

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