Irish men’s lacrosse prepares for showdown with No.1 Maryland
Observer Sports Staff | Thursday, March 3, 2022
The Notre Dame Men’s Lacrosse team will play their third official game of the season this Saturday against No. 1 Maryland in a rematch of a 2021 NCAA quarterfinal matchup. The Irish will enter the game hungry for a bounce-back win after suffering their first loss of the season to No. 3 Georgetown last Saturday.
The Hoyas built an 11-2 advantage with just over seven minutes left in the first half, but the Irish fought their way back. They picked up two goals late in the first half, building some momentum into the third quarter. There, they outscored the visitors 5-0 to bring the score to 11-9 entering the final 15 minutes of the game. With just over 11 minutes left, the Irish brought the score to 11-10, but Georgetown scored five of the final six goals to earn a 16-11 victory. Morrison Mirer accumulated four of the 11 Irish goals. Their ability to respond to the Hoyas’ sizeable lead in the first half bodes well for the Irish in their upcoming contest with Maryland.
Irish face challenge against No. 1 Maryland
Maryland currently holds the top ranking in the NCAA, presenting a challenge for the Irish this weekend. Given how they finished against Georgetown, it’s not insurmountable for the Irish. In the Terrapins’ last game against No. 20 Princeton, they continued their perfect start to the season with a 15-10 victory. This game was preceded by three other wins: 14-10 against Syracuse, 20-8 against Loyola, and 21-13 against High Point. Maryland has not yet played a team as highly ranked as No. 7 Notre Dame, laying the foundation for a competitive and entertaining game this Saturday.
Maryland is a fast-moving team, not allowing the ball to die in the stick often. They are a veteran group, so the Irish will have to guard well against poised dodgers who look to take advantage of defensive gaps through creative passing. The Irish defense was strong in the second half against Georgetown, and its third-quarter shutout of the Hoyas showcased its potential. The tenacity of the Irish defense bodes well for combatting Maryland’s potent offensive approach.
For the Irish offense, the Kavanagh brothers lead the attack with a combined 19 points. Freshman Chris Kavanagh leads the team with six goals. His junior brother, Pat, leads the Irish with six assists, chipping in five goals as well. In their most recent game against Princeton, Maryland’s defense caused 13 turnovers. Ajax Zapatiello and Matt Rahil led the way, each causing three. They also limited Princeton to just 23 shots. Despite these impressive statistics, Princeton does not hold the same offensive prowess as the Irish. Notre Dame will try to capitalize on their homefield advantage against Maryland and make this one exciting contest down the stretch.
The game starts at 2 p.m. Saturday.