April 23, 2009

TOWSON, Md. - Senior midfielder Brian Christopher (Springfield H.S./Springfield, Pa.) scored the game-winning goal with 1.2 seconds remaining in the second overtime period as seventh-ranked Johns Hopkins University (7-4) rallied from a four-goal deficit to win its fourth game in a row, an 11-10 double overtime victory over Towson University (6-8) at the Tigers' Johnny Unitas® Stadium on Wednesday evening.

Christopher, who scored the second overtime goal of his career, gave the Blue Jays the victory with a shot from eight yards out that bounced over the right shoulder of junior goalkeeper Rob Wheeler (Friends School/Baltimore, Md.).

"Our kids played their guts out tonight," Towson Coach Tony Seaman said. "Everybody on our team played as well as they could play. We had some opportunities tonight, especially in the overtimes, but we didn't win it."

The Tigers jumped out to a 2-0 lead late in the first quarter when seniors Randall Cooper (Friends School/Phoenix, Md.) and Justin Schneider (St. Mary's H.S./Stevensville, Md.) scored past junior goalkeeper Michael Gvozden (Severna Park H.S./Millersville, Md.).

With 1:15 remaining in the first quarter, junior attackman Steven Boyle (Pinkerton Academy/Derry, N.H.) narrowed the Johns Hopkins deficit to 2-1 with his 18th goal of the season.

After the teams exchanged just 25 seconds apart late in the second quarter, the Tigers extended their lead to 5-2 with back-to-back goals from sophomore Tim Stratton (Manheim Township H.S./Lititz, Pa.) and freshman Matt Lamon (St. Mary's H.S./Annapolis, Md.). The Blue Jays cut the margin to 5-3 with 26 seconds left in the first half when sophomore attackman Kyle Wharton (Haverford School/Great Valley, Pa.) scored off a feed from junior midfielder Michael Kimmel (Loyola Blakefield H.S./Towson, Md.).

The Tigers upped their lead to 7-3 when Cooper and junior midfielder Pat Britton (Seneca Valley H.S./Germantown, Md.) tallied consecutive goals, but Kimmel answered just 20 seconds later with an unassisted marker to close the gap to 7-4.

After a goal by senior attackman Bill McCutcheon (Chatham H.S./Chatham, N.J.) extended the Tigers' lead to 8-4, Wharton and junior attackman Chris Boland (Boys' Latin School/Columbia, Md.) answered for the Blue Jays with a pair of goals just over a minute apart for an 8-6 Towson advantage.

Schneider regained the Tigers' three-goal advantage with just three seconds left in the third quarter when he scored off a feed from Lamon.

Trailing by 9-6 at the start of the fourth quarter, the Blue Jay offense worked to tie the game with three straight goals. With 13:42 left in regulation, senior midfielder Mark Bryan (Niskayuna H.S./Niskayuna, N.Y.) scored an unassisted goal to trim the Towson lead to 9-7. After senior attackman Josh Peck (Broadneck H.S./Annapolis, Md.) converted an extra-man opportunity with five minutes remaining, Kimmel tied the game with 3:49 left by scoring an unassisted goal.

With 3:24 remaining, McCutcheon scored off an assist from Cooper to regain the Tigers' one-goal cushion, but Christopher responded by tallying the game-tying goal with 2:12 left to force the overtime.

In the first overtime period, the Tigers had their best opportunity with 3:22 remaining but a shot by Britton was saved by Gvozden to preserve the tie. On the ensuing possession, the Blue Jays had three chances to win, including a shot by Boyle that was stopped by Wheeler with 1:31 remaining in the stanza.

Each team traded shots in the opening minute of the second overtime period before the Blue Jays gained an extra-man opportunity after a penalty was called against junior midfielder Will Harrington (Friends School/Baltimore, Md.). However, Wheeler and the Tiger defense withstood two shots before forcing a turnover to kill the penalty.

Schneider had a pair of chances to secure the victory for the Tigers, but Gvozden saved both shots and the Blue Jays got the ball with 47 seconds remaining, setting up Christopher's heroics.

Kimmel led the Blue Jays with a career-high five points, scoring two goals with three assists. Meanwhile, Christopher added a three-goal effort. Gvozden made 15 saves in the victory as the Tigers outshot Johns Hopkins by a 41-35 margin.

One of seven seniors who were playing their final regular season home game, Schneider recorded a career-high four points by scoring two goals with two assists. Cooper also added a two-goal, two-assist effort for the Tigers while Lamon scored a goal with a season-high three assists.

Wheeler made eight saves, including three in the overtime periods.

"Johns Hopkins is a good shooting team and if they get good shots, they're going to get goals," Seaman said. "I thought Rob made five spectacular saves tonight. He was phenomenal in goal for us.

"Both goalkeepers played extremely well tonight," Seaman added. "We just couldn't take care of the opportunities when we had them."

The Tigers, who were playing their first overtime game in nearly two years, will finish the regular season on Sunday afternoon when they travel to the University of Pennsylvania for a 2 p.m. game against the Quakers. The game will be broadcast in the Baltimore area on WTMD-FM 89.7 with Spiro Morekas and Greg LaCour providing the play-by-play.

The Blue Jays, who are 4-0 in the month of April, will travel to Mount St. Mary's on Monday night to face the Mountaineers at 7 p.m.

College Men's Lacrosse: #7 Johns Hopkins University 11, Towson University 10 (2OT)

Johns Hopkins (7-4) 1 2 3 4 0 1 - 11

Towson (6-8) 2 3 4 1 0 0 - 10

Goals: JHU - Brian Christopher 3, Michael Kimmel 2, Kyle Wharton 2, Steven Boyle 1, Mark Bryan 1, Chris Boland 1, Josh Peck 1; TOW - Justin Schneider 2, Randall Cooper 2, Bill McCutcheon 2, Matt Lamon 1, Will Harrington 1, Tim Stratton 1, Pat Britton 1. Assists: JHU - Michael Kimmel 3, Steven Boyle 2; TOW - Matt Lamon 3, Randall Cooper 2, Justin Schneider 2, Will Harrington 1, Bill McCutcheon 1, Tim Stratton 1. Saves: JHU - Michael Gvozden 15 (67:58, 10 goals allowed); TOW - Rob Wheeler 8 (67:58, 11 goals allowed). Shots: JHU - 35; TOW - 41. Extra-Man Opportunities: JHU - 3 for 4; TOW - 1 for 3. Attendance: 3,509.

Post-Game Notes:

· Wednesday's game between the Tigers and the Blue Jays marked the 37th installment of a series which Johns Hopkins leads by a 34-3 margin ... The Blue Jays have now won 14 straight games over the Tigers, dating back to 1997.

· Wednesday's game marked the third overtime game in the Towson-Johns Hopkins series ... The teams split consecutive overtime games in 1988 and 1989 ... It was the longest game in the series, eclipsing a double overtime game which went 64 minutes, 12 seconds in 1989.

· The Tigers played their first overtime game since April 14, 2007, a 9-8 overtime loss against Hofstra at Unitas Stadium ... The Tigers are now 8-9 all-time in overtime games and 5-3 in games which require more than one overtime.

· Johns Hopkins played its second overtime game of the season ... The Blue Jays lost to 12th-ranked North Carolina by a 10-9 margin on March 28.

· The Blue Jays are now 13-7 in overtime under Coach Dave Pietramala ... They snapped a four-game overtime losing streak with the win on Wednesday night.

· With the win over Towson, the Blue Jays are now 40-4 in the month of April under Coach Dave Pietramala ... They also improved to 43-2 against teams from the State of Maryland in Coach Pietramala's nine-year tenure.

· Johns Hopkins is now 33-11 in one-goal games since the start of the 2001 season.

· In addition to the game-winning goal against the Tigers on Wednesday night, Christopher also gave the Blue Jays an overtime victory against Loyola on May 6, 2006.

· The Blue Jays played their first double overtime game since April 8, 2005 against second-ranked Duke, an 11-10 victory at Homewood Field.

· The win over the Tigers marked the first time the Blue Jays have overcome a four-goal deficit since rallying from a 7-1 deficit against Syracuse on March 18, 2005 ... The Tigers led by 8-4 with 7:25 remaining in the third quarter before the Blue Jays made their comeback.

· The Blue Jays are now 80-20 in their last 100 regular season games, dating back to the 2001 season.

· After scoring 10 or more goals in just two of their first nine games, the Tigers have scored 10 or more goals in four of the last five games ... Since the start of the 2002 season, the Tigers are 47-10 (.825) when scoring at least 10 goals.

· Schneider set a career high with his four-point outing against the Blue Jays on Wednesday night ... He also tied a career high with the fourth multi-goal game of his career.

· Lamon set a season high with his one-goal, three-assist effort on Wednesday ... It was also the third time a Towson player has tallied three assists in a game this year.

· Harrington extended his point-scoring streak to six straight games ... He also has a six-game goal-scoring streak after a one-goal, one-assist effort on Wednesday night.

· Cooper has now scored a goal in five straight games while Schneider has an assist in five consecutive games.

· Britton has now scored a goal in each of the last five games ... During that span, he has eight of his 12 goals.

· The Tigers' senior class accounted for six of the team's 10 goals and five of the team's 10 assists on Wednesday night ... In addition, senior midfielder Mitchell Rosensweig won 13 of 25 face-offs and had a game-high eight ground balls.