The Maryland Terrapins (12-3) will wrap up their scholastic year on Wednesday and head up to Princeton, New Jersey on Thursday after practice according to Patrick Fischer's blog. They will play Notre Dame (8-6) in the NCAA Quarterfinals in a rematch of last year's only first round upset. The Terps won 7-3 over the Irish who were undefeated coming into the game and earned the #7 seed in the 16-team field in 2009.
The strength of this year's Notre Dame team is in the cage. Senior goal Keeper, Scott Rodgers (a pre-season All-American pick), has a 7.99GAA on the year and was HUGE in their victory over #6 Princeton. His 58.4 save percentage will make it very difficult for the Terps to put points on the board...but they have faced top goalies all year. In fact, they get to play Brian Phipps in practice everyday. Phipps has an 8.27GAA and a 54.9 save percentage. Over the last seven games, Phipps has stepped up his game even more with a 7.45GAA.
Scoring wise, Notre Dame gets most of their production in the midfield. #33 David Early scored 5 goals against the Tigers, as many goals as Princeton had as a team. #12 Grant Krebs (22G, 4 A) also has more than 20 goals this year, and their points leader is #28 Zach Brenneman, who has scored 35 points this year (23G, 12 A). Their fourth best scorer is #11 Neal Hicks (19G, 13A), second on the team in points.
#7 Trever Sipperly is a true FOGO. He has won 153 of his 274 face-offs (and only missed out on 14 total face-offs). His win percentage is 55.8 while Bryn Holmes is on a tear, winning 64.1% of his face-offs in the last 7 games.
The Irish have actually been out-ground-balled on the year, 397-379. Maryland dominated Hofstra in that category, 41-21, in the first round.
The other thing that is always a factor are the penalties. Maryland sports the 2nd best EMO unit in the country while Notre Dame is phenomenal on defense when playing with a man-down. Because they only commit 2.2 penalties per game, they give up goals 25.8% of the time in those situations.
Marlyand's well-balanced attack is a strength in this game. 40% of the Terps that played against the Pride scored (10 out of 25). This way, the defense can't focus on just Grant Catalino who leads the team in goals, or Travis Reed, or even Ryan Young. One last note for the game, this should be an emotional one for Will Yeatman who transferred from Notre Dame last year.
Listen to wmucsports.com for all the action! Go Terps!