Both clubs came out dressed in clean uniforms and took a full 40 minute warmup, but once action restarted on Wednesday afternoon at Towson University, Loyola was able to run out the remaining six minutes and 57 seconds to wrap up a 13-7 MIAA A Conference semifinal lacrosse victory over Gilman and advance to the conference championship game.

The Dons will play arch-rival Calvert Hall, which edged Boys’ Latin, 11-10, on Tuesday, in Friday’s title game, which will faceoff at 8:00 p.m. at Unitas Stadium.

Despite the tremendous odds against making up an eight goal deficit in less than seven minutes, Gilman came into the restart loose and full of energy.  The Greyhounds did manage to score a pair of goals after play resumed, as junior Max Greene tallied twice.  For its part, Loyola was content to move the ball and run the clock, passing up several scoring opportunites, as it looked to move on to Friday night.

No. 3 Loyola had that luxury because of its tremendous start on Tuesday, prior to the suspension of play due to lightning at Unitas Stadium.


“We knew we’d have to come out and play well in the beginning of the game, and we are doing that right now,” Loyola coach Jack Crawford explained on Tuesday.  “They are a very athletic team, they are a well coached team, and we knew we couldn’t allow ourselves to get in a hole early.

We’re taking care of the ball in possessions, and we are taking advantage of opportunities when we have them.  But of course, the game’s not over.”

The Dons turned in one of the most stunning 24 minutes in recent playoff history, as they rolled up a 10-0 advantage against the defending champion Greyhounds. Loyola got the halftime lead with a devastating seven-goal second quarter.

The Dons did it on just eight shots, taking control of six faceoffs in eight attempts.  Defensively, goalie Chris Thomas needed to make just two saves in the first half, despite seeing the Greyhounds launch nearly 20 shots towards the net.

Loyola’s Austin Stewart recorded a hat trick between the 3 minute, 27 second mark and 1:27 mark in the second quarter, leading the way to the multi-goal halves of Alec Dauses and Mike Distler. Luke Morrison, T.J. Neubauer and Deemer Class found the net.

“I think one of the things we were doing well was moving the ball quickly to the guy who was open,” Crawford said.  “Sometimes teams have a tendency to hold on to the ball too long, and we really did a nice job pedaling the ball up from our end, into the neutral zone, into the defensive box.

“A lot of that was because our guys weren’t holding the ball, were finding the open man and finishing.  It was really unselfish play.”

Gliman seemed to snap out of its funk following the halftime break, coming out and outscoring the Dons in a 3-2 third quarter, but still leaving a lot of work for the game’s final 12 minutes.

Within 25 seconds of the opening whistle, Gilman’s Riley DeSmit put the Greyhounds first point on the board, adding the second point minutes later to post a 11-2 deficit.  Teammate Harrison McCarthy pitched in with a third-quarter score, helping cancel the two Loyola goals from Neubauer and Distler and a 12-3 fourth-quarter start.

workGreene and William McBride paired together for two opening goals in the final period, displaced by Class for the 13-5 score before the game’s stoppage.  Gilman won six of the second half’s nine faceoffs in their attempts to bring the game back to manageable figures.

“You play every game to the end; that’s what we try to preach and do for the most part, so we’ll do that.” Gilman coach Brooks Matthews said.  “You just have to go home, get some rest, have a good day at school and come out ready to play hard again.

“We have been down before.  Memory doesn’t serve that we have been down this deep, but we’ll play hard and finish strong.”

In last year’s semifinals, Gilman trailed Boys’ Latin late in regulation before scoring three man-down goals to force overtime. The Greyhounds won and went on to claim the championship.

“It really doesn’t change things too much.  Whether you are on the field playing a game or you are out practicing, you’re still out moving, you’re still out playing lacrosse,” said Crawford when asked about how having to come back and finish the game would affect his team’s preparations for Friday.  “There are things with an extra day in terms of adjusting and thinking about the next game.  Coming out today we wanted to finish, we wanted to make sure we gave ourselves an opportunity to play for the title on Friday night.”

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Scores and stats to be compiled after Wednesday’s completion.

MIAA A Conference Lacrosse Semifinal

Loyola 13, Gilman 7
LOY    3  7  2  1  —  13
GIL     0  0  3  4   —  7
GIL-Greene 3, DeSmit 2, McCarthy, McBride; LOY-Neubauer 3, Class 2, Dauses 2, Stewart 2, Distler 2, O’Toole, Morrison.
Assists: GIL-Matthai, McCarthy, DeSmit; LOY-Clise 2, Dalton 2, Class, Dauses, Hardwick, McNamara, Neubauer.