February 9, 2016
The lone goal of the game for Hopkins sophomore attackman Shack Stanwick was the game winner against Navy. (John Strohsacker)
The lone goal of the game for Hopkins sophomore attackman Shack Stanwick was the game winner against Navy. (John Strohsacker)

Stanwick Lifts Hopkins over Navy in Double OT Thriller

by Patrick Stevens | LaxMagazine.com | Photos | Twitter

ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Navy survived one man-down situation in overtime Tuesday night. Johns Hopkins didn't permit an encore.

Shack Stanwick scored an extra-man goal off a John Crawley feed 39 seconds in the second overtime as the No. 6 Blue Jays escaped with a 12-11 triumph over No. 15 Navy that should foster plenty of optimism for both of the in-state rivals.

"That's a heck of a lacrosse game for Feb. 9 on a Tuesday night," Hopkins coach Dave Pietramala said. "That's going to benefit both teams moving forward."

In the present, though, the Blue Jays (1-0) gained the most – the chance to leave Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium with a victory.

That was in peril when Navy's Casey Rees scored with 27.7 seconds left in the fourth quarter to tie it at 11. It would ultimately force overtime, where goalie John Connors (10 saves) made a pair of stops even though the Midshipmen played a minute a man down after Chris Fennell was flagged for unnecessary roughness with 0.2 seconds left in regulation.

Navy was less fortunate after long pole Matt Rees picked up an unnecessary roughness call of his own with 1.2 seconds remaining in the first overtime. The Mids wouldn't see the ball again, as Stanwick zipped one in from the left wing to end it well before the penalty expired.

"It's tough to make a living playing man-down against Johns Hopkins," Navy coach Rick Sowell said. "Unfortunately, we couldn't stop them the second time."

Hopkins got six goals from attackman Ryan Brown, who seamlessly segued from his 61-goal junior season to a sterling showing in the first game of his senior year. It received 13 saves from goalie Brock Turnbaugh, who logged less than five minutes all of last year.

It never trailed with a substantially reconstructed defense and authored an instant reply on several occasions during a rock-'em-sock-'em fourth quarter, with Brown scoring within a minute of the Midshipmen (1-1) tying it on two occasions.

Senior attackman Ryan Brown led the Blue Jays with seven points with a team-high six-goal performance against Navy Tuesday night. (John Strohsacker)

"Even if we're down, we can't score a two-point goal or a three-point goal," Brown said. "Having that mentality that we're going to get the next one [is important]. Whether it was a bad play, good play or indifferent, it's the next one that matters. Even though they scored, we were just treating that next possession the same as if we were up a goal."

But there was a lot to like about Navy as well. Although it never led and occasionally left the efficient Brown with space to operate, it followed up a strong second half in its opener Saturday against Air Force with a resilient showing.

These Mids appear to be the most capable offensive bunch of Sowell's five-year tenure, with four players scoring multiple goals. Faced with a 7-4 hole, the Mids scored the next three goals and forged four ties in the final quarter.

"I know we're a team that's going to play hard. I think we're a good team, so there's no surprise there," Sowell said. "I know we're a team that's not going to quit regardless of the circumstances. I knew all that three hours ago. ... I've seen a lot that showed up for 60 minutes today. I've seen it since August."

Pietramala's first in-season glimpse at his reconstructed team was predictably mixed for an opener. Brown is one of the biggest knowns in the game, and his fifth career game of at least six goals can't be considered a surprise.

But it's also not an every-day occurrence, and not something the Blue Jays can count on in each game, especially with projected starting midfielder Connor Reed and Joel Tinney gone for the season before it even began.

"Our margin for error is very slim," Pietramala said. "We can't just be about one guy. Quite frankly, offensively, we need more from other guys."

He could not quibble much with either Turnbaugh's play or the work of new faceoff man Craig Madarasz (14 of 24). Hopkins also broke in a pair of close defense starters, a long pole and a short stick defensive midfielder.

The group showed some vulnerability, but also denied Navy's handful of chances to win it in overtime.

"I've been worried about us defensively and our ability to get stops when we need them," Pietramala said. "We got some tonight."

Enough, at least, to survive the opener unscathed.

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