clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Maryland men’s lacrosse vs. Johns Hopkins preview: The Rivalry returns

New, 12 comments

The Big Ten regular season title is on the line.

Maryland men’s lacrosse Albany Lila Bromberg / Testudo Times

Maryland men’s lacrosse lost at home for the second time of the season last week, dropping a game it never looked comfortable in against Ohio State. The Terps lost 17-of-26 faceoffs while grabbing 11 fewer ground balls than the Buckeyes in a 12-10 game.

Midfielder Connor Kelly had three goals and an assist in the first half, but was subsequently silenced until there were 22 seconds left in the fourth quarter. Attacker Logan Wisnauskas scored two first-quarter goals, but was held pointless for the remainder of the game. Attacker Jared Bernhardt recorded just two points, his lowest total this season.

While it was a disappointing result for the Terps on senior day, they’ll return to action this weekend for a highly-anticipated rivalry game against Johns Hopkins. Not only will it be the 109th meeting between the two teams, but the winner will earn the Big Ten regular season title outright.

In the past week, Kelly and Bernhardt were named two of the 25 finalists for the Tewaaraton Award, given to the best player in college lacrosse at the end of the season. Johns Hopkins midfielder Joel Tinney was also named a finalist.

Maryland has won three straight games against the Blue Jays, including a 12-5 beatdown last year in College Park. Saturday’s game is scheduled for 2 p.m. ET at Homewood Field in Baltimore, Maryland, and will be televised on ESPNU.

No. 7 Johns Hopkins (9-3, 3-1 Big Ten)

Head coach Dave Pietramala played four seasons with the Blue Jays and is now the winningest coach in program history. He has led Hopkins to the NCAA Tournament in 16 of 17 years and two National Championships.

Players to watch

Senior midfielder Joel Tinney, No. 55. Tinney leads the Blue Jays with 43 points this season, scoring 15 goals with a team-high 28 assists. He only had nine assists as a junior, but has become a successful facilitator during his senior campaign.

Senior attacker Shack Stanwick, No. 32. Stanwick is the youngest of eight children, all of whom have played Division I lacrosse. He has 15 goals and 24 assists for the Blue Jays this season, but missed last game with a foot injury.

Senior FOGO Hunter Moreland, No. 31. Moreland is ranked 12th in the country with a .614 win percentage from the X. With the Terps struggling on faceoffs, Moreland will be a pivotal player. He also has three goals and two assists this season.

Strength

Scoring options. Johns Hopkins is the ninth-best scoring offense in the country, averaging 12.8 goals per game. The Blue Jays have two leading scorers—Cole Williams and Kyle Marr—who have nearly 30 goals each, but they also have five others with at least 13 goals this season. Hopkins has scored at least 10 goals in each of its last 10 games.

Weakness

Man-down defense. One of Hopkins’ cruxes this season has been its man-down unit, ranking 43rd (of 69) in the country. The Blue Jays fend off just 64.1 percent of man-down situations. Maryland boasts the second-best man-up offense in the country, which could give the Blue Jays trouble if they’re penalized often. Ohio State only gave Maryland one man-up opportunity last week, which the Terps converted on.

Three things to watch

1. Will Justin Shockey take the majority of faceoffs? Austin Henningsen and Will Bonaparte couldn’t get it done in the first half last week against the Buckeyes and didn’t take a faceoff the entire second half after going 3-of-14 combined. Justin Shockey went 6-for-12 in the second half, helping give the Terps a chance after struggling in prior weeks. Maryland is winning less than 40 percent of its faceoffs in conference play.

2. How will the offense respond to last week’s loss? Maryland’s offense looked fine in the first half last week, but only scored four goals in the second. Kelly had a hat trick and an assist in the first half, but then didn’t record a point until there were 22 seconds left in the game. Bernhardt had his lowest point total in a game in the loss, and Wisnauskas didn’t score after the first quarter. The big three threats need to have another complete game to end the regular season.

3. What are the Big Ten seeding implications? Maryland would’ve clinched a Big Ten regular season title with a win last week, but it has another opportunity against the Blue Jays. Both Hopkins and Maryland enter the regular season finale with a 3-1 record, so the winner will claim sole possession of the title. If Hopkins wins, the Terps can fall anywhere between the No. 2 and No. 4 seed in the Big Ten Tournament, depending on other results around the conference.