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Maryland women’s lacrosse’s Tewaaraton finalists highlight 7 All-American selections

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Megan Taylor and Jen Giles both have a shot at bringing college lacrosse’s highest individual honor to College Park.

Maryland women’s lacrosse defense Megan Taylor vs. Boston College Sarah Sopher / Testudo Times

Maryland women’s lacrosse will be looking to bring the Tewaaraton Award back to College Park on Thursday, as midfielder Jen Giles or goalie Megan Taylor could be the program’s newest recipient. Sam Apuzzo of Boston College won the honor in 2018, but a Terp has won seven of the last nine awards.

Giles and Taylor were among seven Maryland players named to the 2019 Inside Lacrosse media All-American teams on Tuesday. Joining Giles and Taylor on the first team were defenders Julia Braig and Lizzie Colson. Erica Evans was named to the second team, while Caroline Steele and Kali Hartshorn received honorable mentions.

All five Tewaaraton finalists were named First Team All-Americans, and this season also marked the first time each finalist took part in championship weekend, including four of five making the championship game.

Apuzzo is the reigning award winner and is likely to become the first repeat winner since Maryland’s Taylor Cummings, who won three straight between 2014-16. Apuzzo finished the 2019 season leading the nation with 94 goals scored and ranking second with 124 points and 191 draw controls.

The Eagles are also represented by midfielder Dempsey Arsenault, who had 65 goals, 27 assists and 100 draw controls. She has been a dominant force throughout this season, but was quite overshadowed during championship weekend. Arsenault had just five points through two games, while teammates Kenzie Kent and Apuzzo had nine and five points, respectively.

Taylor stands as the Terrapins’ most likely chance to win this year’s award after her championship weekend performance. She reached the 700-save mark during the 2019 season, while also finishing with a .551 save percentage. Over the weekend, the senior saved over 50 percent of shots against, while also finishing with 24 saves, including matching her season high with 14 saves against Northwestern in the semifinal.

Giles also put up a stellar season for Maryland, leading the team in points despite not living on the stat sheet during postseason play. She had 59 goals and 23 assists for 82 points, as well as ranking second on the team behind Colson with 37 ground balls. Her leadership may shine through, though, as it was one of the most commendable parts of her game, especially during championship weekend.

Selena Lasota of Northwestern is up against tough competition as all four other finalists got one more game to perform in front of voters, but she certainly made a mark. She scored a whopping 85 goals throughout the season, good for first in the Big Ten and third in the nation. Lasota’s best chance to make a case for the award was likely to face off head-to-head with Apuzzo in the national championship game, but falling to Maryland and Taylor in the national semifinal likely dampened her chances.

The Tewaaraton Award recipient will be announced Thursday night during a ceremony at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC.