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Maryland-Villanova men’s preview: Terps have big history of top Philly players

Thursday, 14th March 2013

Categories Boy's/Men's, College  
 

Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/14/13
From Press Release

The Villanova Wildcats (1-4) begin three straight weekends of home contests this Saturday when they host No. 1 Maryland (5-0) at 7 p.m. in Villanova Stadium. The matchup will mark the second time in three years the Wildcats have hosted the number one ranked team in the nation: Villanova previously hosted No. 1 Syracuse on March 26th, 2011.

Saturday marks the seventh overall meeting between the Wildcats and Terps while Maryland holds the 6-0 advantage in the all-time series. Prior to reigniting the competition in the 2012 season, Villanova and Maryland had not met in 14 years dating back to 1998. The Terps last bested the Wildcats in College Park, Md. 11-5 on Saturday March 17th, 2012.

The Philly-Maryland connection goes way back – and Maryland’s Sports Information Department provided Phillylacrosse.com with a tremendous historical view of Philly players that have played at Maryland.

As far as Maryland records can show, Maryland first tapped into the Philadelphia area way back in 1951 when midfielder Tom Lillis came to College Park. There was a bit of a gap until the next Philly-area product showed up in the form of goalie Rich Shassian in 1977.

Then came 1993 when a 6-foot-1, 185-pound goalie named Brian Dougherty came to Maryland as a two-time All-American from Episcopal Academy. All Doc did in his tenure as a Terp was be a three-time All-American, be named the 1995 national player of the year, be named the nation’s top goalie twice and be named the 1995 NCAA tournament’s most outstanding player after stopping 23 shots against both Johns Hopkins and Syracuse in the Final Four. Dougherty would go on to win two gold medals at the FIL World Championships and was inducted into the Lacrosse Hall of Fame last fall.

The mid-to-late 1990s also saw James Bickey and Mike Morsell come to Maryland out of the Philadelphia area.

The current trend of Philadelphia-area recruits dates back to 2002 when T.C. Behm (Haverford School) arrived from Villanova, Pa. He only stayed for a couple of seasons, but 2003 saw then Terps’ next star from Philly arrive in the form of Bill McGlone (Ridley), who was a two-time first team All-American.

From there the proverbial flood gates opened from the Philly area as Xander Ritz (Radnor) and Ryne Adolph (Springfield-Delco) arrived in 2004 and Max Ritz (Radnor) and Matt Rankin (West Chester East) followed in 2005. Brett Schmidt (Upper Dublin) and Justin Blye (Downingtown East) came to College Park in 2008.

The Terps’ current crop of Philly talent started to arrive in 2009 when Owen Blye (Downingtown East) came in and redshirted his freshman season. The redshirt trend continued in 2010 when Niko Amato (La Salle) on campus, but didn’t take the field until 2011.

Casey Ikeda also redshirted his freshman season after coming in from Conestoga High School in 2011, but injuries limited him even in 2012, but he’s healthy now and has started all five games so far this season.

A pair of Philly kids came in last season and made an immediate impact. Goran Murray (Haverford School) was named the ACC Freshman of the Year and earned All-America honors after making the switch from long pole to close defense last spring. Kevin Forster (La Salle) came is as a highly regarded attackman, but a preseason injury put him on the shelf for a while and he made the move to midfield when he was healthy. All he did there was score two goals and add an assist in the Terps’ win over Duke in the Final Four.

This season added another four Terps from the Philadelphia area in Tyler Brooke (Conestoga), Jon Garino (Episcopal Academy), Jr., Ryan Lehman (Garnet Valley) and Bradlee Lord (Conestoga).

Here’s a list of Maryland’s All-American’s from the Philadelphia area:

Tom Lillis, M – 1952 (HM)
Brian “Doc” Dougherty, G – 1995 (1st), 1996 (1st)
Bill McGlone, M – 2004 (3rd), 2005 (1st), 2006 (1st)
Xander Ritz, A/M – 2006 (HM)
Brett Schmidt, D – 2010 (3rd), 2011 (2nd)
Niko Amato, G – 2012 (HM)
Goran Murray, D – 2012 (HM)

Addition:
Philadelphia will always have a special place in the hearts of Terps fans simply because that’s where Maryland won its first NCAA title in 1973.

After making the finals in the inaugural NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship in 1971 and a semifinal defeat the following year in 1972, the Terrapins earned their first NCAA title in 1973 with a 10-9 victory over No. 2 Johns Hopkins on June 2 at Franklin Field in Philadelphia.

Maryland capped off an undefeated season thanks in large part to freshman midfielder Frank Urso, now head coach at Garnet Valley. The Long Island, N.Y., native bounced a 15-yard shot off of Blue Jay defender Bob Barbera past Hopkins goalie Les Matthews, who was screened on the play, at 1:18 of overtime to gibe the Terps their first NCAA Championship.

Urso told Sports Illustrated at the time, “I figured if I couldn’t see him, then he couldn’t see me.”

Urso wasn’t the only hero for Maryland in overtime. Terp goalie Bill O’Donnell came out of the goal on a missed shot by Hopkins, but Blue Jay attackman Jack Thomas caught up with the ball and flipped it blindly over his shoulder to the crease. Dale Kohler caught the pass and fired a shot at what normally would have been an empty net. But Maryland defender Ed Glatzel stepped into the crease and knocked the potential game-ender away.

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