NCAA Lacrosse Championship 2022: Maryland vs. Cornell Schedule, Preview
AP Photo/Adam Hunger
The 2022 NCAA Division I Men’s Lacrosse National Championship Game finally has its competitors, with the seventh-seeded Cornell Big Red set to take on the top-seeded Maryland Terrapins at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut, May 30.
The Big Red had a dominant performance against the sixth-seeded Rutgers Scarlet Knights in the Final Four on Saturday to punch their ticket to the championship game for the first time since 2009.
The Terrapins had a similarly impressive outing against the fifth-seeded Princeton Tigers in the Final Four to get back to the championship game for the second straight season and third time since 2017.
Cornell and Maryland haven’t met since the quarterfinals of the 2018 NCAA tournament. The Terrapins knocked the Big Red out of the tournament that year with a 13-8 win to reach the national title game.
Maryland owns a 15-5-1 record all-time against Cornell.
Here is everything you need to know about the 2022 national championship game.
Where: Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut
When: Monday at 1 p.m. ET
Men’s Final Four Scores
(7) Cornell def. (6) Rutgers 17-10
(1) Maryland def. (5) Princeton 13-8
Cornell’s Road to the Championship Game
Cornell has impressed throughout this year’s tournament, though the team didn’t face much of a test in the first round against Ohio State, defeating the Buckeyes 15-8.
The Big Red had a much more difficult time with Delaware in the quarterfinals. Both teams were tied 7-7 through the first three quarters of last Saturday’s matchup, and Cornell rallied for three goals in the fourth quarter to defeat the Fightin’ Blue Hens 10-8.
In the semifinals, Cornell dominated sixth-seeded Rutgers for a 17-10 victory to move to 14-4. It was a continuation of what has been an impressive offensive showing for the Big Red in the tournament.
That said, Cornell has been solid offensively throughout the 2021-22 campaign. John Piatelli, the team’s leading scorer, has tallied 65 goals this season, which includes a five-goal outing against Rutgers on Saturday. In addition, CJ Kirst has notched 53 goals, and the Big Red have three other players who have tallied at least 22 goals this year.
Cornell goaltender Chayse Ierlan, though, will need to be much better against top-seeded Maryland in the championship game. The senior has a 11.07 goals-against average this year and a .527 save percentage.
The Terrapins are averaging 17.3 goals per game in this tournament and are lethal offensively. If Ierlan can’t step up, the championship game could be grueling for the Big Red.
Cornell has not won an NCAA title since 1977. A win would mark its fourth victory in the national title game.
Maryland’s Road to the Championship Game
The top-seeded Terrapins have cruised through the NCAA tournament and will be the favorite against the seventh-seeded Big Red.
Maryland opened the tournament with a massive 21-5 victory over Vermont, which was highlighted by a nine-goal second quarter. It went on to defeat Virginia 18-9 in the quarterfinals.
The semifinals brought more of a test for the Terrapins as the Princeton Tigers were down just 7-4 at halftime, but Maryland went on to score six goals in the second half to reach the championship game with another dominant outing.
While both Cornell and Maryland have boasted explosive offenses, the Terrapins will have the upper hand offensively in the title game.
Logan Wisnauskas, Maryland’s leading scorer, entered the semifinals with 55 goals. However, he’s not the only player who has contributed significantly on offense this year as both Keegan Khan and Owen Murphy entered Saturday’s Final Four with 32 goals.
The Terrapins have six players with at least 25 goals this season and 11 players who have reached double digits in scoring.
In addition, Maryland has also received solid goaltending from both Logan McNaney and Drew Morris. McNaney has posted a 8.64 goals-against average and .575 save percentage, while Morris has posted a 13.08 goals-against average and .544 save percentage.
Maryland’s combination of offense and goalkeeping prowess will make this incredibly difficult for Cornell in Monday’s championship game.
If the Terrapins win the title, it will be their first since 2017 and fourth overall.
Prediction: Maryland def. Cornell 16-9