In a rematch against its highest-ranked opponent of the season, the Rutgers men’s lacrosse team fell to Maryland 13-9 at SHI Stadium for its second loss of the season this afternoon.
The No. 5 Scarlet Knights (4-2, 0-1) opened the game with a 4-1 run in the first 9 minutes of the game. Freshman midfielder Shane Knobloch scored 2 of those goals, the only time he found the back of the net in this game.
The game was turned on its head in the second quarter, when the No. 3 Terrapins (6-0, 6-0) scored 6 unanswered goals to take an 8-4 lead. Jared Bernhardt scored a hat trick just in that run alone, finishing the day as the leading scorer for Maryland with 4 goals.
“I think we all know that Maryland is a very good team,” said Rutgers head men’s lacrosse coach Brian Brecht. “They’re very talented, they’ve got a lot of elite players — very well coached offensively and defensively.”
The Knights were able to keep the game within reach in the second half, cutting the Terrapins’ lead to two at a few points during the second half. But Logan Wisnauskas, who had been kept off the board in the first half, came to life finishing with 2 goals and two assists as Maryland was able to hold on for its sixth straight win.
Much like the scoreboard, the faceoff battle shifted from Rutgers to the Terrapins in the second half. Sophomore faceoff specialist Jonathan Dugenio started off winning 5 of his first 7 draws against Justin Shockey, but was only able to win 5 of 18 in the final three quarters —conceding 8 of 10 faceoffs in the second half.
“I thought we outplayed them in the first quarter, I thought the second half was a push,” Brecht said. “If the second (quarter) was a push, I think it might’ve been a different story.”
The Knights also had five unsuccessful clears — four of which came during the 6 goal Maryland run in the second quarter.
“(There were some) self-inflicted wounds,” said Brecht. “The failed clears in the first half … we have to have an offensive possession."
With four games remaining until the Big Ten Tournament, Rutgers still finds itself remaining undefeated against the rest of the league, with their only losses at the hands of the Terrapins. The Knights will take on Ohio State at SHI Stadium on Saturday, a team that they beat 22-12 in Columbus back in February.
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