Feb. 13, 2006
COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- The Maryland Terrapin women's lacrosse team will open the 2006 season today against defending NCAA champion Northwestern. The game will be played at the Lacrosse & Field Hockey Complex at 1 p.m., and can be listened to live at www.wmucsports.com, or followed online at www.umterps.com.
Admission to today's game is free.
Head coach Cindy Timchal was the Northwestern coach from 1982-1990. The Wildcats discontinued varsity lacrosse from 1993-2001. Current head coach Kelly Amonte Hiller was a standout for Maryland 1993-96, leading the Terps to a pair of national championships and winning national player of the year recognition twice during her career. She still ranks second all-time at Maryland for assists (132) and points (319), and is third in career goals (187).
The Terps and Wildcats are meeting for the first time in women's lacrosse.
The Wildcats are the consensus No. 1 team in the country. They enter this season on a 21-game winning streak. The Terps are ranked ninth in the nation in the IWLCA preseason poll.
Maryland is 24-8 in season openers. The Terps lost last season's opener to Duke, 10-7.
The Terps are 2-2 all-time in the month of February. The February 12 date is the earliest Maryland has ever played a game. (The previous early date was February 21 in 2004 against Richmond.)
The Terps are ranked in the two major polls heading into the 2006 season. The Terps are ranked ninth in the IWLCA poll, but are ranked fourth in the Bounce Entertainment/Inside Lacrosse poll.
Nine opponents are ranked in the IWLCA poll. Maryland will also be facing nine teams that made it to the 2005 NCAA Tournament, including all four teams in the national semifinals (Dartmouth, Duke, Northwestern and Virginia).
Delia Cox was named a preseason All-American by Inside Lacrosse.
Head coach Cindy Timchal was inducted into the Potomac Chapter of the US Lacrosse Hall of Fame. The hall of fame recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to promote the growth and excellence of lacrosse in the greater Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.
The Terps welcome two new assistant coaches to the staff in Brian McGurn and Caitlin Banks.
Scouting The Wildcats
The defending NCAA champion Wildcats enter Sunday's contest on a 21-game winning streak. Northwestern's last loss came May 16, 2004, to Virginia in the NCAA Quarterfinals.
Northwestern played an exhibition game prior to their season-opener against Maryland, defeating the United States national team 19-13.
Five Wildcats earned preseason All-America honors by Inside Lacrosse, including first team honorees Kristen Kjellman, Lindsey Munday and Lindsay Finocchiaro. Sarah Albrecht and Laura Glassanos were named to the second team.
Northwestern led the nation in both scoring offense (15.10) and scoring defense (5.90) last season.
Maryland alum Kelly Amonte Hiller is in her fifth season at the helm of the Wildcats. She is 49-21. Her two assistant coaches, Alexis Venechanos and Acacia Walker are also Maryland alums.
Two Terps have significant scoring streaks heading into 2006. Delia Cox has a goal in her last 18 games, while Katie Doolittle has at least one goal in her last 15 games. Doolittle also finished the season with seven-straight multiple-goal games.
In addition to the 18-game scoring streak, Delia Cox has also started every game Maryland has played during her career, a streak of 61 consecutive starts.
The Terps return 60 percent of their total offense last season, including 144 goals and 61 assists.
Senior Delia Cox was the team's leading goal-scorer last season with 35, and she was followed by junior Katie Doolittle's 33.
Senior Brooke Richards was second on the team in assists last year with 21.
Junior Becky Clipp led the team in groundballs last season with 45. She was second on the squad with 23 caused turnovers.
The Terps return five starters from last season.
The Terrapins traditionally play one of the nation's most difficult schedules, and 2006 will be no different. Nine Maryland opponents are ranked in the preseason IWLCA poll, including eight in the top 10.