Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 5/15/22
From Press Release
In dramatic fashion, the Delaware men’s lacrosse team put together a final rally in the fourth quarter to capture a 10-9 NCAA Tournament First Round victory over No. 2 Georgetown. With the win, the Blue Hens will advance to the quarterfinals and face No. 7 Cornell next Sunday, May 22, from Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio.
Delaware moves to 13-5 on the year. The Blue Hens snapped Georgetown’s 11-game win streak, as the two seed finished their campaign 15-2. The 2022 CAA co-Regular Season and Tournament Champion Blue Hens made the quarterfinals for the second time ever and the first time since 2007.
“I would like to emphasis he leadership of our captains and senior class – the belief in each other and our process,” said Blue Hens head coach Ben DeLuca. “We are thankful for the opportunity to compete in this game here against a great opponent. Blue Hen nation showed up in force and they were a big part of the energy that we fed on throughout the game, particular at the end.”
After a lightning delay kicked the start time back by 50 minutes, it was JP Ward who came out striking. With a feed from Drew Lenkaitis (Unionville), Ward found the back of the cage to give UD a 1-0 edge. Lenkaitis continued to move the ball well as he found Clay Miller 48 seconds later to make it 2-0 for Delaware. The Blue Hens led by three goals after a Nick Jessen score before Georgetown was even able to notch its first goal.
Georgetown squeaked out three goals in the final three and a half minutes to trim Delaware’s lead to 4-3 at the end of the first quarter.
The Hoyas took their first lead of the game with 7:16 remaining in the second quarter to go up 5-4.
Lenkaitis notched his third point of the day when he scored a solo goal at the 4:50 mark in the second to tie the game at 5-5. Georgetown’s goal with 1:43 remaining made it a 6-5 game at the half.
Mark Bieda began the scoring for the Blue Hens in the second half when he received a feed from Mike Robinson midway through the third quarter to cut Georgetown’s lead to 7-6.
Georgetown entered the final period with a two-goal lead.
Robinson scored on a behind-the-back beauty that brought the Blue Hens to within one goal with under eight minutes left in regulation. The home team netted a goal with 4:39 remaining, but it was the Blue Hens who made it a one-goal game again, this time as Lenkaitis scored his second goal of the game.
Tye Kurtz kept his point scoring streak alive when he made it a 9-9 game. The goal made it 45 consecutive games for Kurtz with at least one point. It came down to the final minute and the Blue Hens holding possession to take the final shot of the game. Lenkaitis then found Ward in prime position to make the game-winning goal with eight seconds left on the clock that would settle the 10-9 final.
“You can hear all of the alumni that have been through this program in the stands,” said Kurtz. “We put the building blocks in place. No one believed we could do it besides the guys in that locker room. This means so much.”
Lenkaitis led the Delaware offense with two goals and three assists, while Robinson and Ward each had a pair of goals. Six different Blue Hens scored in the game.
Owen Grant, Delaware’s career record holder for caused turnovers, finished the game with three, in addition to four ground balls. Grant was named a 2022 Inside Lacrosse Second Team All-American during halftime of tonight’s broadcast.
Matt Kilkeary finished with a 14-save showing against one of the top scoring teams in the nation. It was the second-most saves in a postseason by a Blue Hen.
James Reilly (Conestoga) won 14 of 23 faceoffs and short-stick MF James Leary (Haverford School) had two groundballs and a caused turnover.