Denver sophomore midfielder Nate Marano (Foothill ’15) scored a pair of goals and the Pioneers hung tough against the top-seeded Maryland Terrapins, but in the end the Pios fell 9-8 on a sunny day in Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass., in the Mens’ Lacrosse Division 1 semifinal round.
Early on, Marano was the surprise star for Denver. Playing on the third midfield line, Marano and fellow California line mate Joe Reid (Casa Grande HS, Petaluma, CA) outshined the No. 1 and No. 2 lines. With Maryland leading 4-1 in the second quarter and neutralizing Denver’s high-powered offensive stars, Marano powered past his short-stick midfielder mismatch, curled around the front of the net and rifled home a trademark left-handed shot from 15 yards out into the top of the cage to draw Denver within two, 4-2. He would score the next Pio goal five minutes later, this time fooling All-American defensive midfielder Isaiah Davis Allen for his 10th goal of the season by faking as if he were casually carrying behind the cage, then neatly cutting inside the defender to the net and shooting past the Terps goalie, pulling Denver to 4-3.
— NCAA Lacrosse (@NCAA_Lax) May 27, 2017
The game see-sawed from there, with Maryland ultimately holding on for the win and the right to face Ohio State on Monday in the championship game. The No. 3 seeded Buckeyes survived a very game Towson squad, 11-10, in Saturday’s first semifinal.