This Week in Blue Hens Athletics History

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University of Delaware Athletics takes a weekly look back at some of the more memorable dates in Blue Hen history.

MEN'S LACROSSE: Delaware Punches Ticket to NCAA Final Four with 10-6 Win Over UMBC In National Quarterfinals

May 20, 2007

ANNAPOLIS, Md.  -- The University of Delaware men’s lacrosse squad continued to make history as the Blue Hens, behind three goals each from senior midfielders Jordan Hall and Dan Deckelbaum, once again dominated the second half and moved on to a 10-6 victory over No. 13 UMBC in the NCAA Tournament quarterfinals at Navy’s Navy-Marine Corps Stadium.

No. 15 ranked Delaware, playing in the quarterfinals for just the third time in school history, broke away from a 3-3 halftime deadlock by scoring four of the first five goals of the second half and posting its seventh straight victory.

The win moves Delaware (13-5) into the NCAA Final Four for the first time in school history as the Blue Hens will meet No. 3 seed and fifth-ranked Johns Hopkins (11-4) in the semifinals Saturday, May 26 at 12 noon at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore.

No. 4 seed and top-ranked Cornell (15-0) will play top seed and No. 2 ranked Duke (16-2) in the other semifinal contest at 2:30 p.m. with both games being televised live on ESPN2. Duke advanced with a 19-11 win over North Carolina Sunday at Navy. The championship game will be played Monday afternoon, May 28 in Baltimore with the game being broadcast live on ESPN.

“This is such a special moment for our program and the University of Delaware,” said 29th-year head coach Bob Shillinglaw, whose team also made NCAA Tournament appearances in 1984, 1999, and 2005 prior to this season. “Our coaches and our team have put in a lot of time and effort and it’s great to see these guys accomplish something like this. Hopefully this is a big steppingstone for our program. We just seem to keep playing at another level. We had some concerns in the first half but we didn’t panic and we settled down. This is a such a great group because they all seem to be playing on the same wavelength."

The Blue Hens, who also won their sixth straight game away from home, continued their dominant play in second half play in post season. Delaware outscored defending national champion Virginia 7-1 in the second half in last week’s 14-8 first round victory and outscored UMBC 7-3 in the final 30 minutes Sunday. In four post-season games, including Colonial Athletic Association Tournament wins over Drexel and Towson, the Hens have outscored foes 26-11 in the second half.

Deckelbaum, who also dished out an assist, recorded his fifth hat trick of the season and the ninth of his career while Hall, who also added an assist, posted his fourth hat trick of the year and seventh of his career and extended his point-scoring streak to 30 straight games. Adam Zuder-Havens and Curtis Dickson each added two goals and J.J. Moran dished out two assists to lead the Blue Hen offense.

All-American Alex Smith, the NCAA leader in faceoffs, had an assist and won 12 of 19 and set his seventh NCAA record by upping his season attempts total to 415, breaking the record of 406 by Justin Berry of Towson in 2001. Goalkeeper Tommy Scherr posted six saves.

UMBC, which advanced to the quarterfinals with a 13-9 win over No. 7 seed Maryland last week, had won seven of its last eight games but fell to 11-6 on the season. Drew Westervelt led the Retriever offense with two goals and two assists while Andy Gallagher added a goal and an assist. UMBC was also making its fourth appearance in the NCAA Tournament.

“We are really proud about the way we are playing right now,” said Hall, a native of Surrey, British Columbia. “This is a big honor for Coach Shillinglaw. There have been some great teams here at Delaware and its nice to be able to say our team accomplished something like this. “

Delaware scored the first goal of the game as Hall scored off a feed from Deckelbaum just 1:45 in, but UMBC reeled off three straight goals with Westervelt scoring once and dishing out assists on the other two. Two of the goals were man-up scores, including one with Delaware’s Rob Smith serving a three-minute penalty due to an illegal stick.

But the Blue Hens recovered and scored the final two goals of the half to send the game deadlocked at 3-3 into halftime. Deckelbaum scored off a feed from Moran with 8:36 left in the half and Hall tallied with just 23 seconds left to knot the score.

Zuder-Havens scored just under three minutes into the third quarter to give Delaware the lead but UMBC came back to tie the game for the third time as Alex Hopmann scored with 8:13 left in the half.

Delaware then took control to put the game away as Deckelbaum scored two goals 3:34 apart in the third quarter to increase the lead to 6-4 and Hall scored his third goal of the game off a feed from Chris Hichborn to up the margin to 7-4 with 12:22 left to play.

UMBC cut the lead to 7-5 on a goal by Westervelt with 11:53 left to play, but the Hens wasted little time getting the ball back. Smith won the ensuing faceoff, raced to the goal and fed Dickson for a goal just six seconds later to increase the lead to 8-5. Zuder-Havens added some insurance as he scored his second goal, the 50th of his career, with 6:49 left and Dickson scored again with 5:15 left to put the game away.