- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 29, 2008

Part of Maryland lacrosse midfielder Jeff Reynolds’ routine in recent years would entail facetiously asking sports information director Patrick Fischer whether any reporters needed to talk to him before shrugging off the inevitable “No.”

Things have changed for the redshirt junior.

Reynolds has scored 11 goals — third on the team — as the No. 4 Terrapins (6-2) enter today’s ESPN2-televised game against No. 1 Virginia (9-0) at Byrd Stadium. And it has brought plenty of attention for a guy who had never scored in 36 career games before this season.

“I knew my time would come,” Reynolds joked in the midst of an extended media blitz this week.

It could have come last year, when Reynolds figured to anchor arguably the nation’s strongest defensive midfield unit. But two games into the season on a day Maryland played on its turf field, he tore his right ACL and was gone for the year.

With an eight-month recovery period, Reynolds was out for the fall as well. It didn’t stop him from returning as a more complete player, one who has earned his first extended look on offense at the college level.

“I guess one of the things I took out of it is I have another year of experience, so I get to work on some of the things I wasn’t so good at before,” Reynolds said. “Offensively, I got to work on stickwork during the time I was out, and I think it’s really benefited me during the season.”

Not to mention the Terps. Reynolds’ emergence has legitimized a second midfield line that began the season as tenuous at best. But with the 6-foot-1, 190-pounder capable of punishing opponents — as he did with his first career hat trick in last week’s victory at North Carolina — opportunities can be created for Maryland’s young attackmen.

“He is a monster, to be honest,” Virginia coach Dom Starsia said. “He is just playing with such a passion right now. He just jumps off the page. He’s not the prettiest player, but he is just so determined and so forceful. He’s been a terror.”

There’s still a little defensive midfielder in him — he plays on the wing on faceoffs and ranks fourth on the team with 21 groundballs. Yet his offensive influence makes the biggest difference for the Terps.

“It’s just an opportunity,” Reynolds said. “Every middie wants a little offense, and I played offense in high school. I knew I was able to do it. I think the best fit for me first two years was playing d-middie. I was able to work at some of the areas, and once those things caught up I was able to contribute offensively.”

And now his time has come.

Take two for Phelan

Goalie Tommy Phelan practiced every day this week for No. 9 Navy (8-1), which plays host to No. 5 Georgetown today, while starter Matt Coughlin remained limited with a hamstring injury.

“You can draw your own conclusions,” coach Richie Meade said. “And your conclusion would probably be correct.”

Phelan made his first career start Sunday for the Midshipmen, stopping 13 shots in an 8-3 victory at Colgate.

Kocis getting close

Georgetown’s victory over Duke last week was the first over a top-ranked team in program history, and things might soon get even better for the Hoyas (4-2).

Sophomore midfielder Scott Kocis, out since the preseason with a collarbone injury, could return within two weeks.

“He’s not there yet,” coach Dave Urick said. “I think probably Loyola [on April 12] is a realistic time-frame for him. Fairfield [a week earlier] would be a little bit of stretch.”

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