One year after sweeping the Tewaaraton Award, Maryland lacrosse had a chance to do the same this season. But unlike Matt Rambo and Zoe Stukenberg last season, Connor Kelly and Megan Whittle did not come home with the hardware Thursday night.
The men's award went to Ben Reeves of Yale, while the women's award went to Sam Apuzzo of Boston College.
Despite not winning the top award in the sport, both players had excellent seasons. Kelly finished 2018 with 46 goals and 36 assists, and his 82 points are the third most by a Maryland player in a single season. He was also named a First Team All-American and the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, and finishes his career ranked fifth in Maryland history with 128 goals and tied for ninth with 191 points.
Like Kelly, Whittle was also Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year and a First Team All-American. She had 84 goals and 15 assists in her final season in a Maryland uniform, and leaves College Park with a Maryland-record 298 career goals. Whittle also finished her career with 339 points; Jen Adams is the only Terp to have more.
Even though both teams lose their top offensive weapon, they should make noise on the national stage once again. John Tillman’s team loses leaders all over the field, but still returns a strong core of players, led by Jared Bernhardt, Logan Wisnauskas and Bubba Fairman on offense and Curtis Corley on defense. Cathy Reese’s squad loses two starting attackers in Whittle and Taylor Hensh and a starting defender in Kathy Rudkin, but should be no lower than No. 2 in next year’s preseason rankings behind a loaded Boston College. Jen Giles and Caroline Steele will lead a talented offense, and All-Americans Julia Braig and Lizzie Colson will anchor a defense that returns its most starters in three years.