It has been a week since the NCAA Championship wrapped up in Stony Brook and while the sting hasn't completely gone away, it's still a great time to reflect on some top Terp headlines in 2011.
THESE SENIORS HAVE CLASS
The members of the senior class of 2011 were nothing short of spectacular during their time in College Park.
The class was at the forefront of three conference titles and, of course, the 2010 NCAA crown. There is little doubt that head coach Cathy Reese and her staff will have their hands full replacing six starters from this year's team including Sarah Mollison, Laura Merrifield, Sara Cooper, Katie Gallagher, Brittany Poist and Brandi Jones.
This year's senior leadership will certainly leave a lasting legacy at Maryland.
Standing in the press conference after the tough loss to Northwestern last Sunday, Maryland fans would have been so proud to watch Mollison and Gallagher fire off responses to some of the toughest questions a player ever has to answer. They took it all in stride and they did it with class.
Humility is something inherited not only from great parents but also great coaches. There were no excuses; just respect for the opponent, love for the game and admiration for their teammates.
TERPS EARN TOP ACC HONORS - AGAIN!
For the fifth consecutive year, a Maryland student-athlete was named the ACC Player of the Year. This time it was Sarah Mollison who garnered the prestigious honor.
In addition to Mollison, head coach Cathy Reese was tabbed the top coach in the conference for the fourth time in her five-year tenure. The Terps also had league-best six players on the All-ACC list, including Brittany Dipper, Karri Ellen Johnson, Katie Gallagher, Laura Merrifield, Katie Schwarzmann and Mollison.
THE HIGHER THEY'RE RANKED, THE HARDER THEY FALL
Maryland defeated 15 nationally-ranked opponents this season. The Terps toppled five top-five foes, including ACC rivals North Carolina and Duke twice. In those 15 wins, Maryland outscored its opponents 195-95. The Terps also averaged 13 goals per game.
Sarah Mollison and Katie Schwarzmann became the first duo from the same school to be named finalists for the Tewaaraton since 2008.
Schwarzmann was the first sophomore to be tabbed a finalist since former winner Hannah Nielsen did so in 2007.
THE BIG DIPPER
Brittany Dipper cemented herself as the top goalie in the nation this season, earning top goalie honors from both WomensLax.com and Synapse Sports. The junior, who was tabbed a Tewaaraton finalist in 2011, racked up a nation-best 6.54 goals against average. She also tallied the country's top save percentage (.522), boasting a career-high 141 saves.
Dipper has always been a 'big game' player. She earned ACC Championship All-Tournament status for spectacular performances as a freshman and a sophomore. This season, however, the junior took her game to a new level of consistency and poise. Dipper's play in the cage is yet another reason for optimism in 2012.
Oh and a note on the headline. Thanks to Brian Kapur for his colorful play-by-play as crew chief at WMUC. Congrats on the graduation, good luck in the future and remember - once a Terp, always a Terp!
From April 11, 2010 to May 1, 2010 the Maryland women's lacrosse team did not lose one single game, racking up 28 straight wins. Here are some fun numbers from the streak:
237 - Total number of goals Maryland defeated its 28 opponents by
14.39 - Average goals per game
121 - Total points by Sarah Mollison
18 - Ranked opponents topped by Terps
36,571 - Total fans that witnessed at least one game in the streak
6.39 - Brittany Dipper's goals against average
2 - Atlantic Coast Conference Championships
1 - National Championship
HEALTHY GALLAGHER LEADS DEFENSE
Katie Gallagher was a main storyline all season long and it wasn't just for her work with the nation's best defense.
The fifth-year senior served a redshirt season in 2010 after being diagnosed with Crohn's Disease. Gallagher made a big impact not only as a senior leader on this year's team but also as a survivor of this little-known disease.
After realizing her story could touch and inspire others, Gallagher did not shy away from any interviews even though it was not easy to talk about what she describes as 'the scariest time of her life'. Following Maryland's win against Duke in the NCAA tournament, Gallagher, her parents, and head coach Cathy Reese sat down with CBS for an in-depth interview about her battle with Crohn's.
The piece will air nationally on CBS June 19 at 4 p.m. Make sure to check it out!
RECORD BOOK RAID
Karri Ellen Johnson, Sarah Mollison and Katie Schwarzmann all took aim at the Maryland record books this season, landing in the top ten on both the single season and career lists.
Mollison ended her illustrious career ranked fourth in career points (272) and ninth in goals (153). The Aussie is only the third player in Maryland history (Jen Adams, Kelly Amonte) to garner 100 or more points in a season. With 101 points in 2011, she lands at No. 5 on the single-season list. The senior's 45 assists also rank fifth in single season annals.
Schwarzmann tied Allison Comito for the ninth-most goals in a season with 65. Johnson, who saw her season cut to only 11 games, climbed to fourth on Maryland's career goals list.
Speaking of Johnson, while the Terps certainly missed having 'Puddy' in the lineup for the majority of the season, what Lacrosse Magazine's Preseason National Player of the Year did in only 11 games is pretty phenomenal.
The Terps' top attacker tallied 39 goals and actually ended the season as Maryland's fourth-best scorer despite missing 12 games.
One concession from Johnson's injury (she was diagnosed with a concussion following Maryland's win at Towson), is the apparent bond formed between her and future phenom Brooke Griffin. Johnson and Griffin, the nation's top recruit in 2010, spent countless hours in the training room together.
Griffin, who should be back to form this summer after an ACL injury last fall, will likely team up nicely with Johnson to create another formidable offense in 2012.
Maryland captured its third straight ACC title this season. Led by a tremendous effort from senior Laura Merrifield, the Terps staged a fantastic second half comeback to defeat the Tar Heels, 12-7, in the championship game.
Check out highlights here!
Fans came out to the Field Hockey & Lacrosse Complex in record numbers this season. The Terps eclipsed the 1,000-fan mark three times this season including a season-high crowd of 1,569 April 8 to watch the Terps topple No. 4 North Carolina.
The Terps appreciate your support in helping make College Park one of the most difficult places to play in the nation. It is not just a coincidence that Maryland has not lost a home game in three years.
We'll see you again in 2012!