Maryland's top-seeded women's lacrosse team have a 4-0 record against their quarterfinal opponent, No. 8 Stony Brook. But these Terps have never played the Seawolves, who set their sights on winning the national championship with a continuous rise over the past several years.
Well-known for their defense when the Terps beat them four times between 2011 and 2013, including in the second round of the 2013 NCAA tournament, Joe Spallina's team has developed into a high-scoring opponent as well. The Seawolves rank first in Division I in scoring defense and third in scoring offense.
Junior Kylie Ohlmiller broke former Terp and current Loyola Maryland coach Jen Adams' Division I single-season points record (148) and now has 157. She and her sister, Taryn, a freshman with 98 points, account for 46 percent of the team's points.
While Maryland coach Cathy Reese's team hasn't seen an offense so prolific in just a couple of players -- although the Seawolves do have other threats -- she said it's hard to tell what might happen when they take the field against the Terps defense.
"Every team's different. It's so hard to compare," Reese said. "It's a team that we haven't faced in years. We don't have a lot of common opponents. We're in different conferences. They've had a lot of success not only on the defensive side, but on the offensive side, too -- players with big numbers for both of them. It's an exciting game coming up, especially in the NCAA quarterfinals for us to be challenged and tested this way."
The Terps have seen a lot more backer zone defenses like Stony Brook's this year, as many teams have converted to it to try to counter quick offenses necessitated by the 90-second shot clock.
Undefeated Maryland's offense, leading Division I with 17.05 goals per game against a schedule that included 10 ranked teams, takes on a Seawolves defense allowing just 7.0 goals per game while going 5-1 against ranked teams. In games against common opponents, the Big Ten champion Terps won by an average of 9.3 goals while America East champion Stony Brook, with a loss to Florida, comes out ahead by 5.8.
This article is written by Katherine Dunn from The Baltimore Sun and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.