Photo copyright (c) 2007 Tom McCrystal

Garrett Billings (19) tees off on Georgetown goalie Miles Kass (1) in the first quarter of Virginia’s final preseason tuneup, Saturday, February 10, 2007. (Click for a larger version: 117K.)

Nearly 500 lacrosse fans braved temperatures in the mid-30s to watch consensus Number 1 Virginia scrimmage fifth-ranked Georgetown Saturday afternoon. Despite some sloppy play after halftime, as both teams tried out new sets and reached deep into their benches, it was clear that both teams can only be called very, very good.

Virginia dominated the first half, and for a while, it seemed like a good thing that no one was officially keeping score. Throughout the first quarter, the Cavalier offense dominated Georgetown, notching several goals. In the second, the Hoyas at least managed to maintain possession for a significant part of the quarter, but were shut down by a withering Virginia defense. Of the shots that Georgetown did manage to fire, most were easily handled by Cavalier goalkeeper Kip Turner.

Photo copyright (c) 2007 Tom McCrystal
Virginia defensemen Ricky Smith (3) and Matt Kelly (33) doubleteam Georgetown attackman Andrew Baird (16), Saturday, February 10, 2007. (Click for a larger version: 157K.)

Things changed in the second half, as Georgetown became much more patient and Virginia became uncomfortable with a number of offensive and defensive matchups. The Hoyas began to methodically slip the ball past the Virginia defense and into the goal, while Georgetown’s goalies began to make a few saves. After Virginia delivered a string of mental breakdowns, Coach Dom Starsia called time out to refocus his team.

Although Georgetown continued to score in the fourth quarter, the Cavaliers put things back on track and the ball back into the net. Both teams called on their reserves, who seemed eager to showcase their abilities. In any case, a significant portion of the crowd stayed through the end of the match.

For what it’s worth (and in pre-season scrimmages, that’s not much), the unofficial final score was Virginia 11, Georgetown 9.

The Cavalier men open their season at home on Sunday, February 18th, against Drexel University. That game is slated to begin at 1:00pm, at the University Hall Turf Field.

Photo copyright (c) 2007 Tom McCrystal
Backup Hoya goalie Jack Davis (29) makes a stop, Saturday, February 10, 2007. (Click for a larger version: 140K.)

Photo copyright (c) 2007 Tom McCrystal
Virginia midfielder Joe Dewey (25) attempts to works past Georgetown middie Cullen Molinari (30), Saturday, February 10, 2007. (Click for a larger version: 138K.)