Georgetown Preparatory School boys’ lacrosse player Charlie Horning couldn’t have asked for a better birthday present: a win over rival and fellow national power Landon.
Playing on his 19th birthday, the senior attackman scored three goals — including the game-tying score late in the fourth quarter — to lead the Little Hoyas (11-0) to a 9-7 win over the Bears (9-2) Friday in North Bethesda.
“It’s always big to win against Landon,” said Horning, who planned on going to his grandmother’s house after the game to continue the celebration. “We always mark it on our calendars. Really winning this is definitely going to help us throughout the season.”
Horning’s third goal came when Georgetown Prep needed it most. Late in the fourth quarter, after a near 24-minute scoring drought, the co-captain fired a shot from the right side and beat the Landon goalkeeper to end a 5-0 run and tie the game 7-7.
Senior attackman Tanner Holifield put Georgetown Prep ahead a minute later with the game-winner and Drew McLaughlin added an insurance goal to make it 9-7.
“Once we settled down and we really got to doing what we were doing in the beginning of the game, I think we found our groove,” said Horning, a Villanova University recruit.
Senior goalkeeper Will Railey made several clutch saves to preserve the lead and give Georgetown Prep its second straight victory over the rival Bethesda school.
“I knew we’d win and come back and score,” Railey said. “We’re not a team that quits. We never give up.”
Georgetown Prep took a 6-3 lead into intermission with Horning and junior David Lipka notching two goals in the first half and Railey coming up with big save after big save. The game turned in the second half, with the Bears winning the ground balls, controlling the draws and erasing what was once a four-goal deficit. Senior midfielder Sam Lynch scored his third goal to tie the game early in the fourth quarter and senior attackman Sean O’Brien gave Landon its first lead of the game with less than nine minutes remaining.
But after surrendering the 5-0 run — or getting the “snot” kicked out of them, as Georgetown Prep coach Kevin Giblin put it — the Little Hoyas responded with a run of their own and finished the game strong, scoring the game’s final three goals.
“We thought it would be a game of runs, we just wanted to make sure we made the last run and we were fortunate enough to do that,” Giblin said.
Georgetown Prep 9, Landon 7
Landon 0 3 2 2 — 7
Georgetown Prep 3 3 0 3 — 9
Landon (9-2): Goals — Sam Lynch 3, Jack Bolen 1, Nate Buller 1, Jack Falk 1, Sean O’Brien 1.
Georgetown Prep (11-0): Goals — Charlie Horning 3, David Lipka 2, Townsend Brown 1, Tanner Holifield 1, Drew McLuahglin 1, Jack Olson 1.