May 3, 2008
Baltimore, Md. - Senior Shane Koppens scored two goals and added one assist, but it wasn't enough as No. 5 Johns Hopkins rallied for a 9-6 win over Loyola at Diane Geppi-Aikens Field on Saturday afternoon. The Greyhounds, who held a two-goal lead in the third quarter, were outscored 4-1 in the final stanza to close the regular season at 7-6 overall.
Koppens, Loyola's leading scorer this season, got the Greyhounds on the board with an unassisted tally only two minutes into the game. After a response from Hopkins' Mike Kimmel, it was Collin Finnerty who dodged a man and found the upper-right corner of the cage.
The Greyhounds, who led 2-1 after the first, would go into the half knotted at 2-2. The Blue Jays took their first lead on Stephen Peyser's second goal of the game, but the Greyhounds came right back with Koppens leading the charge.
"My second goal was a bit lucky," admitted Koppens. "I saw an opening and shot the ball as hard as I could."
The goal tied the game at 3-3 with 12:07 remaining the third quarter. The Greyhounds won the ensuing face-off and Koppens found Taylor Ebsary to give Loyola the lead right back at 11:58 of the quarter.
"I saw Taylor [Ebsary] wide open in the middle of the field," said Koppens. "He always does a good job of finding open spaces and being patient. When the defense slid towards me, I fed him and he put it away."
Loyola's 4-3 lead increased to 5-3 with Chris Basler's eighth goal of the season. Johns Hopkins, however, scored back-to-back goals to close the quarter and evened the game going into the final 15 minutes of play.
The Greyhounds, who are 7-0 when leading after three quarter this season, would not be able to get the lead back. Sophomore Cooper MacDonnell added his team-leading 21st goal of the year, but in the end it was Hopkins, behind three goals from Kimmel, who would prevail in this year's Charles Street battle.
Both Loyola and Johns Hopkins will continue their seasons in the NCAA Tournament. The Greyhounds, who won the ECAC this season, earned the league's automatic qualifier to guarantee themselves a spot. The NCAA Selection Show will air Sunday evening at 9 p.m. on ESPNU.