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On This Day: Virginia takes down Maryland in longest NCAA lacrosse game

March 28, 2009, the Hoos emerged victorious over the Terps in 7OT.

2010 NCAA Lacrosse Championship - Semifinals Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

Although the Virginia men’s lacrosse team won’t be finishing out their season as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, there are still some classic games from the archives to look back on and remember.

On this day in 2009, the No. 1 Virginia Cavaliers hosted then-ACC rival Maryland in a conference battle that had major implications in the standings. The No. 9 Terrapins were hoping to get a leg up the ACC with a win, but the Hoos had other things in mind. What played out was one of the most exciting — and the longest — game in NCAA Men’s Lacrosse history.

Brian Carroll would prove to be the hero as he netted the game winner one minute into the seventh (yes, SEVENTH) overtime period, giving Virginia the 10-9 victory. Legendary Wahoos like Steele Stanwick, Garrett Billings, Danny Glading, Ken Clausen, and Adam Ghitelman anchored the team that was 10-0 on the season to that point.

The Hoos got out to a 1-0 lead thanks to a doorstep finish from John Haldy, but the Terps rattled off two straight goals to take its first lead of the game. The Hoos responded with two of their own, capped off by Stanwick giving Virginia a 3-2 lead with 1.1 seconds left in the second quarter off of a broken clear by Maryland.

Midfielder Steve Giannone doubled the Virginia lead with a goal to open the third quarter, but once again Maryland was able to score back-to-back times. The Terps were gifted a goal that the officials deemed went in, despite replay showing it hit two pipes (hmm, maybe the 2019 quarterfinals were just the lacrosse world evening things up), and Maryland took a 6-4 lead with just over 11 minutes remaining in the third.

Shamel Bratton smoked a defender in the open field and canned a shot to close the gap to one, but the Terrapins responded with two straight to establish their biggest lead of the game (three goals) with 3:40 left in the third quarter. The score would carry into the start of the fourth quarter, and Stanwick’s third goal of the game was negated by another broken play score from Maryland to keep the deficit at three (9-6).

Then things got exciting.

With no shot clock, Maryland was able to milk a bunch of time off the clock, and Virginia’s deficit remained at three with just under six minutes remaining in the game. Defender Matt Kelly came up with a loose ball and found Stanwick in transition to close the gap to two. Just 39 seconds later, Glading rolled the crease and finished to make it a one goal game with 5:08 to play.

Carroll’s first of two goals tied the game up at 9-9 with 4:39 remaining.

No one would score for the next 29:39 as the two teams duked it out in sudden-victory overtime. Maryland thought they had won it to open the first OT period, but head coach Dave Cottle called a timeout, negating Grant Catalino’s score.

In the second overtime period, Ghitelman was called for an illegal body check, sending the net-minder to the penalty box for a minute. Back-up goalie Mark Wade not only had to enter the game cold off the bench, but had to face the Maryland man-up unit. Maryland’s Dan Groot got off an absolute rip from outside, and Wade somehow came up with the best save of his college career to keep his team alive.

Nothing really happened OT period four, but Ghitelman came up with huge saves in 3OT, 5OT and 6OT (x2!) to deny the Terps. Maryland had three separate one minute man-advantages across the first six overtimes, unable to convert any of them.

Maryland once again won the face off (they won 15-of-26 in the game), but Ghitelman’s 22nd save of the game — and sixth of overtime — gave the ball back to the home team. After a successful clear, Glading got the ball to Carroll just inside midfield. The middie worked his way in, cut left — and switched to his left — and ripped a high-to-high shot past Brian Phipps from about 15 yards out to win the game.

Virginia would go on to make it to the NCAA quarterfinals, where they fell to Cornell. This one, however, will live among Virginia lacrosse lore forever.

Check out the full highlights — including top-notch play-by-play from Joe Beninati — here: