The World Cup of Lacrosse featured a best-of-three format for its games between the United States and Canada at Johns Hopkins University's Homewood Field. But after the U.S. team's 20-10 victory before 4,783 tonight gave it a 2-0 series victory, the Canadians were happy there were no more games to play.
Canada entered tonight's game having lost its previous three games to the United States by a combined four goals, including 16-15 in Game 1 on Wednesday and a 15-14, double-overtime loss in the 1998 World Lacrosse Games final.
Tonight's game looked as if it were headed for a similar ending after Canada tied the game at 7 on attackman John Grant's goal with 8 minutes 23 seconds left in the first half.
But the U.S. team scored 13 of the game's final 16 goals. Three came from tournament most valuable player Casey Powell, who had five goals and an assist overall. Jesse Hubbard, a St. Albans graduate, added all three of his goals in the run.
"We came out in the second, third and fourth quarters and wanted to take it to the Canadian team," said Powell, the 1997 and 1998 NCAA player of the year at Syracuse. "They got pretty tired and we were definitely faster to begin with. We knew they did not have six guys on defense who could stop our six on offense."
Said Canada Coach Frank Nielsen: "These games come right in the middle of our indoor box lacrosse season, so most of the guys will take early flights home Saturday to get home in time for Saturday night's games. We know that by coming down here and playing the U.S. we will get better."
It is not certain whether they will get another chance to play the United States before the 2002 World Games in Australia. World Cup organizers said they are planning to hold another event next year, though they were not certain where it would be or which teams would be competing. The two games here drew a combined 7,860, and Powell admitted he had hoped for more fans.
U.S. teams have lost just once in international competition since 1967 -- and that was to Canada, 17-16, in the 1978 World Games championship game. But outdoor lacrosse seems to be growing and next summer World Cup organizers may have to contend with Major League Lacrosse, an eight-team professional outdoor lacrosse league.
"This would be a great place for the MLL to have games," Powell said. "If we get the caliber of players who played here tonight I think the league would do very well."