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Monday Motivation: March 23

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This is a tough one.

Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Ok everyone. Turn off the Adele and put the lid back on that quart of cookie dough ice cream.

The week didn't end well, but there were a few good moments that deserve to be highlighted.

The Women's Swimming and Diving team participated in the NCAA Championships this week, finishing a school-best 5th place behind some stellar individual performances. Third-year Leah Smith won two individual NCAA titles in the competition, the second UVa. swimmer to win two career titles, and the first Cavalier to win two in one meet. Smith cruised to a victory in the 1,650 Free, posting 15:46.46, 12 seconds faster than the closest competition. That time was also good enough for both a UVa. and ACC record. She also took first place in the 500 Free.

Fellow third-year Courtney Bartholomew also broke a school and ACC record with her 1:49.35 time in the 200 Backstroke, finishing second place behind Missy Franklin (yes, the Olympic gold medalist).

Congrats to the ladies on their huge performance in the NCAAs!

No.8 Women's Lacrosse had a big week as well, beating No.12 James Madison 14-12 on the road, and handing No.4 Duke their first loss of the season, 13-10.

Nine different Cavaliers scored against the Dukes, led by Liza Blue with four. Fourth-year Casey Bocklet had one goal and three assists, and was crucial in starting a 7-1 run that helped solidify the victory.

Bocklet continued her hot streak when the Hoos hosted Duke at Klöckner Stadium, scoring four goals and dishing one assist. Virginia led 7-3 at halftime, and held off the Devils in the second to secure the victory, their first in the ACC. Courtney Swan scored three goals and nabbed five draw controls, helping the Hoos win the draw battle 13-12.

Next up, the ladies travel to William and Mary on Wednesday.

On the Men's Lacrosse side of the house, Virginia pulled of a THRILLING overtime victory against the always-fun-to-beat Johns Hopkins. In a game of runs, the Hoos went up 3-0 behind goals from Greg Coholan, AJ Fish, and Ryan Tucker. Hopkins answered with six straight, then Virginia rattled off three of their own, two more from Tucker sandwiched around a Tyler German rocket.

The third quarter started with back to back goals from Johns Hopkins, but Virginia answered with three straight from Will McNamara, Tucker (again!), and a blistering sidewinder from Zed Williams. Hopkins re-took the lead after two goals from the Stanwick brothers, Wells and Shack, but it didn't last long as Zed and German scored their second goals of the game. Hopkins evened the score at 11 with just 1.4 seconds left in the third on a broken play.

Williams added his third of the day to open the 4th quarter and his fourth to retake the lead after Hopkins' Holden Cattoni tied it at 12. Then things didn't look so good after the Blue Jays rattled off three straight, taking a 15-13 lead with under five minutes to play, especially when Hopkins went two men up for 30 seconds with under three minutes to play.

Second year Michael Howard came up with a huge blocked shot and ground ball to end the double EMO for JHU, leading to a Tyler German goal with 1:34 to play.

Hopkins won the faceoff, their TWENTY THIRD faceoff win of the game, leaving the Blue Jay bench in hysterics and pounding their chests.

Dom Starsia wasn't done yet. After Hopkins' timeout with 1:24, back up goalie Will Railey entered the game to assist in pressuring the ball as a more nimble goalie than starter Matt Barrett. It couldn't have gone more perfectly for Virginia or worse for Hopkins. Just eight seconds elapsed before Howard was able to strip the ball from the Hopkins player who lost his footing, and Virginia cleared the ball with a chance to tie the game.

Tucker answered the call, scoring his fifth of the game, tying a career high, with 45 seconds to play in regulation.

Jason Murphy came up HUGE in the ensuing faceoff, winning the clamp and getting the ball ahead to Tyler German who drew a slash, giving Virginia an extra man up for one minute. The Hoos decided to hold the ball and take the EMO into overtime. They couldn't convert the penalty as overtime began, but Ryan Lukacovic shook his defender and found Greg Coholan open for the game winner, capping the epic comeback.

Coholan's extra time game winner was his second against Hopkins in as many seasons, finishing the game last year in Charlottesville in the same fashion. The midfield was incredible with Tucker (5 goals, 2 assists), Williams (4g, 1a), German (3g), Coholan (2g, 2a), Fish (1g), McNamara (1g) accounting for all of the goals. Attackmen Ryan Lukacovic and Owen Van Arsdale each added an assist.

The win was Virginia's sixth of the season, moving them that much closer to the requisite .500 record to make the post season. Next up, The Hoos take on VMI, then host upstart Richmond on Saturday. If you wanted to watch the whole Hopkins game, it's up on ESPN3. It's a pretty good way to forget about other things that may or may not have happened this weekend.

I do want to take a chance to say thank you to Darion Atkins for everything he accomplished in his four years at Virginia. He worked hard, stuck with the plan, and was a huge contributor in this year's success. We here at Streaking the Lawn wish you the best of luck ...it is hard to see you go. Thanks also go out to Rob Vozenilek and Maleek Fraser for their contributions. We'll miss you guys!

If you don't feel better yet, here are some puppies.