1976 NCAA Division I Men's Lacrosse Championship

The 1976 NCAA Division I tournament championship game was played at Brown University in front of 7,504 fans. The undefeated Cornell Big Red, led by Richie Moran, Mike French and Eamon McEneaney, defeated Maryland and Frank Urso 16 to 13 in overtime.

1976 NCAA Division I Men's
Lacrosse Championship
DatesMay 1976
Finals siteBrown University
ChampionsCornell (2nd title)
MOPMike French, Cornell
Attendance[1]7,504 finals
20,819 total
NCAA Division I Men's Championships
«1975 1977»

Tournament overview

Throughout the 1970s Cornell University was dominant in lacrosse with four national championship appearances to go with three titles. The 1976 and 1977 versions of the Big Red are generally considered to be among the best college lacrosse teams of all time. The Big Red's 1976 NCAA championship team featured six Hall of Fame players as well as two Hall of Fame coaches.

In the matchup that lacrosse fans wanted to see, for the first time in NCAA tournament history, two undefeated teams No. 1 Maryland and No. 2 Cornell would meet in the championship game.

The game did not disappoint as Cornell, down 7-2 at halftime, outscored Maryland 6-2 in the third period to pull within one goal entering the final period. The Terps opened the fourth period with a goal to go up 10-8, but the next four tallies belonged to Cornell who led 12-10 with three minutes to play. Maryland, however, would get back-to-back goals including a buzzer-beater to knot the game and send the contest into overtime. After an initial tally by the Terps’ Terry Kimball, Cornell would score four unanswered goals to claim the crown with a 16-13 victory.

Cornell earlier in the tournament recorded the only shutout in NCAA tournament history when they blanked Washington and Lee 14-0 in the first round. In a game that featured both snow and pouring rain, the Big Red did the improbable with goalie Dan Mackesey pitching a shutout making 13 saves. The No. 7 Generals, who had been national semifinalists the previous year, had an impressive offensive unit coming into the contest, having outscored its regular season opponents, 147-89.

In a 22-11 semifinal win against Navy, Maryland's Ed Mullen had 7 goals and 5 assists to set the tournament record of 12 total points in one game.

Mike French tied the then-NCAA tournament single-game scoring record, finishing the day with seven goals and four assists, while Dan Mackesey matched the then-tournament record for saves in a single-game with 28 stops.[2][3][4]

Tournament results

First Round Semifinals
May 19
May 29
1 Maryland 17
8 Brown 8
1 Maryland 22
4 Navy 11
4 Navy 13
5 North Carolina 9
1 Maryland 13
2 Cornell 16(i)
3 Johns Hopkins 11
6 Massachusetts 9
2 Cornell 13
3 Johns Hopkins 5
2 Cornell 14
7 Wash. & Lee 0
(i) one overtime

Tournament box scores

Tournament Finals

  • Cornell scoring – Mike French 7, Jon Levine 4, Bill Marino 2, Steve Dybus, Gary Malm, Bob Henrickson
  • Maryland scoring – Frank Urso 2, John Lamon 2, Ed Mullen 2, Barry Mitchell, Lance Kohler, Bert Caswell, Bert Olsen, Jim Burnett, Greg Rumpf, Terry Kimball
  • Shots: Maryland 58, Cornell 43

Tournament Semi-Finals

Johns Hopkins00145
  • Cornell scoring – Jon Levine 5, Bill Marino 3, Mike French 2, Albin Haglund 2, Tom Marino
  • Johns Hopkins scoring – Dave Huntley 2, Tom Myrick, Joe Garavente, Rich Hirsch
  • Shots: Cornell 39, Johns Hopkins 23
  • Maryland scoring – Ed Mullen 7, Roger Tuck 4, Bert Caswell 3, Bob Ott 2, Frank Urso, Jim Burnett, John Lamon, Mike Farrell, Lance Kohler, Terry Kimball
  • Navy scoring – Mike Canders 4, Bob Holman 2, George Moore 2, Jeff Connolly, Jim Shulson, Emory Chenoweth
  • Shots: Maryland 58, Navy 49

Tournament First Round

  • Maryland scoring – Frank Urso 3, Bert Caswell 3, Lance Kohler 2, Ed Mullen 2, Roger Tuck 2, Terry Kimball 2, Bert Olsen, Bob Ott, Mark Shores
  • Brown scoring – Peter Bensley 3, Bob MacLeod 3, Steve Meister, Bill Ohlsen
  • Shots: Maryland 43, Brown 34
North Carolina13329
  • Navy scoring – Skip Miller 3, Bill Claridge 2, Jeff Long 2, Emory Chenoweth, Mike Chanenchuk, Chris Burgin, Bill Stulb, Bob Holman, Mike Canders
  • North Carolina scoring – Dan Cox 2, Steve Sartorio, Paul Worstell, Bill MacGowan, Martin Sutton, Tom Venier, Larry Turheimer, Doug Fierro
  • Shots: Navy 43, North Carolina 34
Johns Hopkins260311
  • Johns Hopkins scoring – Mike O’Neill 4, Rich Hirsch 2, Franz Wittlesburger 2, Tom Myrick, George Johnson, Phil Garavente, Dale Kohler
  • Massachusetts scoring – Fred Menna 5, Jeff Spooner 2, Andy Scheffer, Paul Martin
  • Shots: Johns Hopkins 43, Massachusetts 34
Wash. & Lee00000
  • Cornell scoring – Robert Mitchell 3, Tom Marino 2, Bob Hendrickson, Mike French, Jon Levine, Eamon McEneaney, Dave Bray, John O’Neill, Albin Haglund, Steve Dybus, Keith Reitenbach, Brian Lasda, John Britton.
  • Wash. & Lee scoring –
  • Shots: Cornell 39, Wash. & Lee 20

Tournament outstanding players

Mike French, Cornell, 20 points, Leading Tournament Scorer

  • The NCAA did not designate a Most Outstanding Player until the 1977 national tournament.
    The Tournament outstanding player is listed here as the tournament leading scorer.

Tournament notes

  • Cornell's 14-0 victory over Washington and Lee was the first shutout in the tournament's history.


  1. "NCAA Lacrosse Division I Results / Records" (pdf). NCAA. p. 3 (51). Retrieved 24 April 2014.
  2. "Cornell University Men's Lacrosse Media Guide". CSTV.com.
  3. "Sports Illustrated archive of 1976 title game". SportsIllustrated.com. June 7, 1976.
  4. Rick Wheeler. Big Red Makes History. THE POST-STANDARD. May 20, 1976. pg. 17
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