Baltimore, Md.—The UMBC men’s lacrosse team gave the top-ranked Johns Hopkins Blue Jays all they could handle before falling by a 10-8 count before 921 fans at Homewood Field.
Sophomore midfielders Kyle Wimer (Lancaster, Pa.) and Maxx Davis (Baltimore, Md.) and junior attackman Ryan Smith (Fallston, Md.) led the offensive effort with two goals each. In the nets, junior Jeremy Blevins (Cockeysville, Md.) continued his outstanding play, keeping the Retrievers in the game for all 60 minutes with a brilliant 10-save effort.
UMBC (1-3) jumped in front, 2-0 on goals by Wimer and Smith just 3:50 into the game. The Blue Jays (3-0) then started their assault on the face-off circle, winning 11 of 12 first half draws. JHU scored the final three goals of the first quarter, but Davis scored his first career goal at the 8:11 mark of the second stanza to knot the score at 3-3.
Hopkins’ Paul Rabil quickly regained the lead for the hosts, but Smith scored with 1:41 to play in the half and Davis ripped his second goal of the game with 20 seconds to play to give the Retrievers a 5-4 lead. But Hopkins’ Stephen Peyser won the ensuing face off and scored to send the teams into the locker rooms tied at 5-5.
The Retrievers took their final lead of the night as senior midfielder Terry Kimener (Oakton, Va.) hit the net just 1:24 into the third period. But JHU outscored the Retrievers, 3-0 over the next 17 minutes and led, 8-6 with 13:21 left in the final period. Wimer gave UMBC new life with a dodge and score with 10:05 to play and the Retrievers had two lengthy possessions to attempt to tie the score.
But they could not get off a quality shot and Hopkins countered with a Steven Boyle inside score with 4:41 to play. UMBC committed a slashing penalty with 2:30 remaining and Rabil scored into an unguarded net with 1:36 remaining as UMBC attempted to double team the Blue Jay attack.
Sophomore Matt Latham capped the scoring (Eldersburg, Md.), as he converted a Kimener pass off a JHU turnover and tallied an extra-man goal with 17 seconds left. But Rabil got possession of the ensuing face-off and the Blue Jays held off the desperate UMBC rally.
The Retrievers showed dramatic improvement in many departments, including committing just a season-low eight turnovers and outshooting the defending national champions, 39-36.
Boyle led all scorers with three goals and two assists.
UMBC hosts Yale in the first meeting between the two schools on Saturday at UMBC Stadium.