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Maryland women's lacrosse Whittle and Fitzpatrick claim weekly awards

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Megan Whittle's explosive scoring week and Alex Fitzpatrick's nearly impenetrable wall at the back of Maryland's defense earned Maryland two Big Ten weekly awards.

Courtesy Maryland Athletics - Greg Fiume

By every measure, the Maryland Terrapins women's lacrosse team has launched its 2015 season in an impressive fashion both as a team and individually. In their 7-0 start the team has beaten three top 10 opponents. Individually, each week since they opened play on February 15th, at least one Terp has claimed a Big Ten Player of the Week Award. Monday afternoon's announcement by the conference marked the first time the Terps swept all three awards as the conference honored Megan Whittle, Brooke Griffin and Alex Fitzpatrick.

Megan Whittle - Freshman of the Week

This is the second time Whittle has been named the conference's Freshman of the Week. Her first honor came after she made her collegiate debut scoring two goals on three shots in Maryland's season opening 15-5 win over William & Mary. She followed that with three consecutive hat tricks before scoring just once against Syracuse. Thus, Whittle had a pleasantly consistent 12 goals in her first five games in a Maryland uniform.

Then the Terps traveled to Towson and the precocious freshman put on a show for those who made the trip to Johnny Unitas Stadium. She took seven shots and six of them found the net as Maryland romped to a 17-2 win. She continued her assault on the goal when the Terps hosted sixth ranked Florida Saturday afternoon. Although she didn't quite match her .857 shooting percentage, she registered another hat trick in the first half finishing with three goals on just five shots. Her total of nine goals in the two games was one more than the combined total of the goals scored by Towson and Florida.

Alex Fitzpatrick - Defensive Player of the Week

Goalie Alex Fitzpatrick, a transfer from Lehigh, has proven herself a valuable addition to Maryland's defense in the season's first five weeks as she claimed the Big Ten's Defensive Player of the Week Award for the second time. Fitzpatrick posted 10 saves in the Terrapins' mid-week game at Towson. While the Tigers aren't an explosive offensive team, they had scored 13 times in a recent win over Georgetown. They managed only two against Fitzpatrick and the Terps' defense.

Saturday's contest against an explosive Florida Gators squad that entered the game averaging more than 16 goals per game shaped up as more of a challenge. Fitzpatrick's save percentage, like Whittle's shooting percentage, fell against Florida dropping from .833 to a still impressive .538. She registered seven saves while anchoring a Maryland defense that limited Florida to just six goals - more than 10 below their season average. Her .540 save percentage is among the best in the NCAA.

The women's lacrosse team wraps up a three game home stand hosting 13th ranked Penn on Wednesday and 15th ranked James Madison on Saturday before they open Big Ten play at Northwestern on March 26th.