Postscript from Hofstra at Maryland
Maryland’s attack gets a lot of attention and rightfully so. That unit has helped the offense rank 10th in Division I with an 11.8 average entering Saturday’s first-round game against Hofstra in the NCAA Tournament.
But the defense deserves a few headlines, too. That unit, which ranked 10th after surrendering 8.5 goals per game prior to Saturday, limited the No. 19 Pride to a season-low eight goals in a three-goal victory for the No. 3 Terps.
Junior defenseman Ryder Bohlander shut out Hofstra junior attackman Jamie Lincoln, the team’s leader in goals (33) and points (53), and junior attackman Stephen Bentz didn’t register a point against junior Max Schmidt.
"I thought Ryder Bohlander did a really good job on Jamie Lincoln," Maryland coach Dave Cottle said. "He stayed in front of him, and when he dipped under, he didn’t let him get anything. I think he had one under shot. If he got by us, we wanted him to take us top-side a little bit."
Pride junior attackman Jay Card scored four goals on junior defenseman Brett Schmidt, but two of those goals occurred in the final 71 seconds of regulation.
"They did a great job of getting in our hands and pressuring the ball," Card said. "I know our whole attack found it difficult to kind of get in a groove because they were always in our hands. It was just hard to operate and get into our sets with that happening."
Hofstra coach Seth Tierney said the team ran plays to persuade the Terps to slide, but Bohlander would not budge from Lincoln, and the other defensemen mostly stayed true to their assignments.
"I thought we had a lot of opportunities," Tierney said. "If it’s not one guy, it’s another on their defense that steps up and makes a play. Or their goalie will come up and make a save on a lay-up-type look. … They keep coming at you. They’re tough. They’re a tough lacrosse team."
*Four of Maryland’s goals came off transition situations. Redshirt junior long-stick midfielder Brian Farrell’s goal gave the Terps a 1-0 lead with 11:31 left in the first quarter, and tallies from sophomore midfielder Jake Bernhardt, senior midfielder Dean Hart and junior attackman Ryan Young also occurred during transtion. "I think transition is a big part of our game," Cottle said. "Our poles can pick the ball off the ground and run and they can score. We have to get transition in order to be effective."
*Senior Bryn Holmes won 15-of-22 face-offs, matching his career high when he won 15-of-21 draws against Navy on April 10. And Holmes thrived in a match-up against Hofstra freshman John Antoniades, who entered the game tied for 18th: in the country with a .562 percentage. Cottle said he has discovered the key to Holmes’ success. "I’ve figured out the way to really get him going is to make fun of him, telling him that there’s no way he can beat this guy. And when I do that, he shows me wrong each week. We’ve been a good groundball team all year and a good face-off team and a good clearing team, and Bryn has stepped up."
*The Pride were in the game on Saturday due to the play of sophomore goalkeeper Andrew Gvozden, the Severna Park native and graduate who made 13 saves. It was a welcome departure from earlier in the season when he was benched after the season opener and didn’t return to the starter’s role until April 6. "This season has kind of been a roller-coaster kind of season for me," Gvozden said. "I felt like at the beginning of the season, it dropped, and I still stuck it out and waited. When I got my shot again, I had two games where I played really well and then I had a couple games where I didn’t crack 50 percent, which is what you’re shooting for. But when you make the playoffs, none of that matters. You’ve still got a chance anyway. So when they still stuck with me for this game, I knew I had to come out and make a lot of saves because when you’re goinng against a team with a lot of shooters and big guys, they’re not going to stop, and that’s pretty much what they did. They just kept it going, and after a while, our defense – I don’t want to say we got too tired, but after a while, all of those shots and all of those one-on-ones start to get to you."
*One of the funniest lines from the post-game conference came from Hofstra coach Seth Tierney, who compared some of the Terps’ larger players to certain kitchen appliances. "There are some big boys on that team," he said in an obvious reference to 6-foot-6, 260-pound attackman Will Yeatman, 6-5, 240-pound attackman Grant Catalino, 6-5, 205-pound long-stick midfielder Brian Farrell and 6-4, 220-pound Max Schmidt. "Over 60 minutes, they lay on you. Gets tough to bench-press some of those refrigerators out there."