Hopkins Blows out Navy on Midshipmen's Senior Day
Hopkins Midfielder Paul Rabil picks up the ground ball and sprints to the attack side. Hopkins uses a early run and strong defense to defeat the Midshipmen 12-5 at Annapolis on April 19, 2008. Yuchen Nie/DC Sports Box
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- At this point, Hopkins no longer seem like the team that fell to Duke by 11, they no longer seem like they are going to miss the post-season, and they certainly no longer seem like they're scared to play. Hopkins has finally started to click on every aspect of the game and winning their games to go into the post-season. This week, they defeated the Midshipmen of the Unites States Naval Academy 12-5 improving their record to 5-5, while the Midshipmen drop to a respectable 9-4. Hopkins was lead by their goalie, Michael Gvozden, who had 16 saves in the win.

Hopkins started off strong going on a 4-score run without a response from Navy. Despite losing the opening face-off, Hopkins' defense pressured the Navy ball carrier and pushed him out of bounds to get the ball back. After Hopkins moved the ball around on attack, Kevin Huntly drove to the ball and shot for the first goal of the game. Hopkins won the ensuing face-off and Stephen Peyser passes the ball back to Huntly, Huntly shot one and rattled the net for his second goal of the game. Navy defender Marty Gallagher was following Huntly and as he shot the ball, Gallagher tackles Huntly into the crease calling for unnecessary roughness on Gallagher. Hopkins took advantage of the man-up situation when Paul Rabil found Kyle Wharton, who was cutting to the goal. Wharton caught the pass and fired into the net. After Hopkins went to 4-0 lead, Navy responds when Paul Tim drives to the goal and fires a shot to cut the deficit to 3. Navy won the ensuing face-off to have another shot at the goal. The ball found its way to Paul Tim's stick, where he fired another shot and scored to cut Hopkins' lead to 2.

The second quarter, Navy managed to turn up their defense as they held Hopkins to 7 shots compared with the 9 shots they had in the first. Unfortunately, Navy could not mount any sort of offense as they constantly shot at the goal with very little success against Michael Gvozden's keeping skills. Paul Rabil of Hopkins had success when he dodged to the goal and fired for his first goal of the game with 10:50 remaining in the half. Then on the other side, Navy's senior attack, Nick Mirabito, fired his shot with a hook move from behind the goal to trim the deficit to 3.

Last week, Stephen Peyser won the opening face-off to start the second half and scored in just four seconds. This time, Peyser won the face-off and on the fast break, he passed the ball to Tom Duerr, who then passes the ball to Michael Doneger to score Hopkins' 7th goal of the game. This whole process took a total of 7 seconds to complete as Hopkins increased their lead to 4 and started the run that would put Navy out of the game. Navy had many opportunities to shoot, but it seemed that every time they shot, the ball either went wide of the goal or right into the stick of Hopkins goalie Michael Gvozden. Navy had a total of 10 shots and Gvozden had 5 saves during the 3 period. Meanwhile, the Hopkins offense found success in the goal as Mark Bryan found Michael Doneger in front of the goal. Then with a little over 5 minutes remaining in the half, Paul Rabil fired a shot at the goal where it ricocheted off of Navy goalie Tommy Phelan's stick, and Mark Bryan quickly picked off the ball and fired it back into the net before Phelan had time to regain his composure.

Going into the fourth, Hopkins had all the momentum and holds it as Stephen Peyser scores his first goal of the game and then another goal by Andrew Miller to increase the lead to 8. Navy finally responded with a goal by Gregory Clement with a little over 3 minutes left to play. However, by then, Hopkins had already put in their subs and the game was clearly over.

Navy has dropped two straight (their last one against their biggest rival, Army) and must respond in the Patriot League Tournament, while Hopkins focuses their efforts on next week game against Towson. Hopkins has regained their record to .500 but a few more convincing wins is necessary to get them into the tournament.