Maryland won Game 1 of these two ACC powerhouses showdowns, a 12-8 win in Arlotta Stadium that wrapped up the #1 seed in the ACC Tournament, and won them the ACC Regular Season title. This one's just a bit bigger. Maryland would be in line for the #1 overall seed in the NCAA Tournament with 2 wins here this weekend, while the Irish are smack dab on the tournament bubble and another loss to Maryland tonight could seal their fate. ND must answer the call in a high-pressure situation if they want to be playing May lacrosse. Maryland must answer that play by Notre Dame if they want some hardware to take to the B1G.
If you haven't already (here's my lone shameless plug) here's my preview for the ACC Tournament.
Maryland enters ranked #7 in the media poll and #5 in the coaches poll. They went 4-1 in the ACC this season, beating Syracuse, Duke, Virginia, and Notre Dame. Notre Dame enters ranked #9 in the media and coaches polls and went 2-3 in the ACC this season, beating North Carolina and Virginia.
Both teams need this one, for entirely different reasons. Maryland lost in a blowout to Virginia at this same stage last year and all momentum before the NCAA Tournament was gone. They slipped to a #6 seed. This years team could have a whole tidal wave of momentum by winning the ACC Tournament. Notre Dame is playing for their postseason lives. Every other team in Philadelphia this weekend (including North Carolina and Virginia) is in the Tournament. Notre Dame isn't. They're just in right now, and likely will be with a win tonight. But a loss, and they could very well be sitting on the sidelines as The Big Barbecue gets underway.
And lastly, leave some predictions
Who wins? And why?
Who leads Maryland in goals?
How many goals are scored total?
And lastly, here's how to watch
When: 7:30 PM ET
Where: PPL Park, Chester Pa.
If you can't get to a TV, we'll have updates as we go along. If you can and just want to stop by, feel free. Either way, root on the Terps as they take on the Fighting Irish.