When junior defenseman Matt Billings scooped a loose ball in overtime of Saturday’s Interstate Athletic Conference lacrosse game at Landon, Georgetown Prep had already been playing defense for nearly two minutes. Once the Little Hoyas finally took possession, they needed only a few seconds to produce the goal that clinched an 8-7 win over the Bears in Bethesda.
Billings got the break started, and junior Townsend Brown’s flick off a pass from senior Colin Giblin found the net 1 minute 58 seconds into overtime, providing the latest memorable ending in the area’s most storied rivalry.
Fourth-ranked Georgetown Prep snapped its two-game losing streak against Landon and gained the inside track for the top seed in next month’s conference tournament.
“I’ve had it at the point and I’ve missed the shot or [Giblin has] missed the shot or I’ve mishandled the pass,” said Brown, who scored twice in the game. “I think we’re like 1 for 12 [on] fast breaks this year, so that’s a good time to get one.”
Georgetown Prep (13-4, 2-0 IAC) erased a two-goal deficit in the second half and appeared headed for a regulation victory when junior Brendan Collins dodged a defender on the perimeter to create enough room to score his third goal with 59 seconds remaining.
But No. 2 Landon (7-6, 1-1) found a way to extend the game. Handling faceoff duties in place of injured senior Jason Murphy, freshman Sam Offutt won the ensuing chance and senior Rob Dunigan capitalized, scoring on a shot just under the cross bar with 12 seconds left.
In the extra period, Georgetown Prep’s defense dug in. Landon moved the ball around the perimeter but failed to muster a quality look. Finally, junior Scott Lanham poked the ball free for Billings, and the Denver-bound defenseman barreled down on Landon’s net.
Billings looked like he was going to shoot before dropping off a pass for Giblin on the right side. Trailing the play, Brown cut down the middle and converted from in close to give the Little Hoyas their 12th win in 13 games.
The goal brought Georgetown Prep students out of the stands to celebrate with the players near the spot of the goal.
“You dream about that, being able to celebrate with your team after Georgetown Prep-Landon,” Giblin said. “It’s just a great feeling.”
Dunigan and junior Sean O’Brien each scored twice for Landon, which used a run of four straight goals in the middle quarters to take a 5-3 lead late in the third quarter. The Bears couldn’t hold the advantage, allowing the Hoyas to tie the game at 5 on Brown’s goal just before the third-quarter buzzer.
The Little Hoyas had lost four of five to Landon with the lone victory coming in overtime in the 2011 IAC tournament final. Saturday’s game marked the seventh in 11 meetings that was decided by a single goal.
“Probably if we kept playing, we would have just gone back and forth some more,” Landon Coach Rob Bordley said. “That’s kind of the way these games are.”