Michael Leo dove toward the crease with a swarm of Terp defenders closing in. Leo’s shot bounced past Logan McNaney into the back of the net — No. 5 Syracuse erupted in momentary celebration, thinking Leo scored the overtime game-winner.

Jack McDonald’s shoulders sank in disbelief, but Ajax Zappitello immediately pointed to the ground, signaling to the officials that Leo landed in the goal mouth. The officials discussed and waved off the goal — a review confirmed their call.

No. 4 Maryland men’s lacrosse survived.

The Terps cleared the ensuing possession. George Stamos received a Colin Sharkey feed, took a few steps forward and bounced a shot into the back of the net.

There was no uncertainty with Stamos’ goal. Maryland’s heartbreak turned into jubilation as it claimed a 13-12 overtime victory.

“I’ve been on that [losing] side, it’s one play and we’re going home,” coach John Tillman said. “It’s inches, literally.”

[George Stamos’ overtime goal lifts Maryland men’s lacrosse to 13-12 win over Syracuse]

A trio of Syracuse players near the cage lifted their arms in joy when Leo’s shot snuck past McNaney. Leo stood up, slammed his stick to the ground and raced away, turning his head to maintain his view of the officials.

McDonald stared at the cage, awaiting the officials’ ruling. McNaney remained on the ground, slowly bringing himself up to his feet. Nick Redd, one of the Maryland defenders that closed in on Leo, got up only enough to take a knee, anxiously awaiting the call.

An official emphatically waved his arms after a brief discussion to signal no goal. The same official announced the ruling after looking at the replay. The game continued.

“It happened fast,” Tillman said. “They disallowed it, obviously they have a little better vantage point. I’m glad they reviewed it.”

The Terps were saved by Leo diving into the goal mouth, a rule added just before the 2020 season. It prohibits offensive players from diving and landing in the arc within the goal-crease area, a penalty resulting in no goal and a loss of possession. Tillman’s team was prepared for the ruling — Stamos said the coaches planned for possible situations after the restart.

Maryland acted on its plan the moment play resumed. McNaney jogged about 20 yards down the field, scanning his options before finding Zappitello. Zappitello took a few steps and lofted a pass to Sharkey, who then spotted Stamos wide open.

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“I was the hash guy so I just cut to the middle and flashed my stick there,” Stamos said. Sharks kind of fed me and [the goal] just kind of happened.”

The Terps went over the clear all week in practice, Stamos said. Maryland’s execution, only 16 seconds after the game restarted, gave it the win — even if the goal came from an unlikely place.

Stamos, a short-stick defensive midfielder, redshirted his freshman campaign. He made his first collegiate appearance in the Terps’ season opener two weeks ago and entered Saturday with just one career goal.

Stamos didn’t expect to take the shot — he scanned to see if there was a player open closer to the cage. There wasn’t.

“It wasn’t drawn up for that,” Stamos said. “I didn’t think he was going to pass it to be honest … I just wound up shooting it.”

Stamos’ goal prompted reverse reactions from Leo’s overturned score. Syracuse was in disbelief while Maryland celebrated.

Goalie Will Mark slowly rose from his knee. Nick Caccamo rested his stick on his head. Riley Figueiras watched the Terps celebrate, his shoulders low.

Maryland’s players near the cage all blissfully lifted their arms. Stamos ran to the other side of the field, his teammates following for a mob. Tillman pumped his fist into the air as the Terps cemented the positive end of an emotional swing.