College lacrosse: Maryland, Johns Hopkins renew their rivalry with Big Ten title on the line
Maryland and Johns Hopkins, two powerhouses that became rivals in 1895, continue to add verification of why this is the greatest rivalry in the sport.
This year adds another championship scenario between the two squads. The winner of Saturday’s matchup will claim the Big Ten regular season title.
For Maryland, it's a chance to win its third straight regular season crown and match what the school's women’s team did Thursday night. For Hopkins, it presents an opportunity to claim the No. 1 seed for the first time since the Big Ten tournament began in 2015.
Numbers to know
The Blue Jays lead the all-time series 64-43-1 with an additional seven wins coming before Maryland was an officially sanctioned varsity team. The Terps ride three-straight head-to-head wins into Saturday's matchup, their longest win streak since taking four consecutive contests from 1961-64.
RELATED: Tewaaraton Award nominees announced
The two programs are competitive in nearly every statistical category: Hopkins leads in goals per game 12.8 to 12.1, Maryland leads in goals allowed per game 9.9 to 9.1, Hopkins leads in shots per game 42 to 33 and Maryland leads in saves per game 10.3 to 9.8.
Players to watch
Maryland senior midfielder Connor Kelly has tallied 20 points in his last three games, including five last weekend in a loss to Ohio State. Another five-point performance would push him to 70 on the year, a feat only eight Terrapins have accomplished. Another offensive weapon next to Kelly is sophomore attackman Jared Bernhardt, who has single-handedly put the Terps' offense at No. 2 in the country with seven man-up goals this season.
The offensive production starts at the X for the Blue Jays. Senior Hunter Moreland has won more than 60 percent of his faceoffs on the year. Seniors Joel Tinney and Shack Stanwick dish assists left and right, averaging nearly five per game and both are top 20 in the nation in that category.
The Terps’ Dan Morris and the Blue Jays’ Brock Turnbaugh have both held their own this season between the pipes but will need to come up big in their final college regular season games.
Can the Terps push their streak to four straight wins against the Blue Jays? Or will Johns Hopkins defend its home field and head to Ann Arbor with the No. 1 seed?
The rivalry renews Saturday at 2 p.m. ET in Baltimore. Catch it all on ESPNU.