Friday night. Top-5 matchup. Rematch. ACC and NCAA seeding implications. Let’s go!
It’s kind of hard to believe, but the final game of the regular season for the Syracuse Orange women’s lacrosse team is already upon us.
The No. 4 Orange (13-3, 6-1) are traveling up to Chestnut Hill for some Friday night lights action with the No. 3 Boston College Eagles in a rematch of last year’s national championship game. Draw is set for 6 PM and will be televised on ESPN U.
Ready for our regular-season finale against another top-5 team.
— Syracuse Women’s Lacrosse (@CuseWLAX) April 22, 2022
While the motivations of last year’s title game loss will certainly be mentioned, this game is also massively important for this year in terms of resume building and ACC Tournament seeding implications. The Orange could finish as high as the 2-seed with a win, but a loss would drop them down possibly to the 4-seed depending upon how the tiebreaker shakes out.
SU is stepping into a tricky situation as the visitors the final regular season home game for all of BC’s seniors/graduate students. It’s also what BC refers to as the “Red Bandanna Game”, which is played every year to honor the memory of former BC lacrosse player Welles Crowther, who died while saving the lives of others on 9/11. Obviously, there is a ton of emotional weight behind this game for the Eagles.
BC is also coming off a loss in their most recent game, a surprising 16-15 defeat to Duke last Saturday. In that game, Charlotte North only scored two goals. You just know BC is going to have renewed motivation and focus coming off that disappointing loss. So, yes, I guess you could say there’s a lot of reasons and motivations for the Eagles to have a good day. It definitely feels like the Orange are starting with an uphill battle in this one.
The Eagles have an absolutely loaded roster on both ends of the field. Offensively, we all know Charlotte North (65G, 13A) leads the way as probably the best, most dangerous player in the country. It will be interesting to see how Kayla Treanor and Caitlin Defliese decide to try to defend her. Last week, they played a lot of one-on-one versus Jamie Ortega. Will they face-guard? Will they bring lots of doubles? Will they try a zone with man-marking on Charlotte? It’s going to be interesting to see.
North is far from the only offensive weapon to be worried about. She’s joined by the likes of Jenn Medjid (53G, 16A), Belle Smith (33G, 21A), Caitlynn Mossman (26G, 22A) and Kayla Martello (28G, 6A), among others. Defending them is sure to be a nightmare for this SU defense.
The BC defense is also chock full of players who are among the best at their positions in the country. Rachel Hall is the veteran goalie who leads the way, and their defense has a handful of All-American caliber players who will be tasked with stopping Meaghan Tyrrell, Emily Hawryschuk and Co. Hollie Schleicher, Courtney Taylor and Sydney Scales lead that veteran BC defense.
Finally, the familiarity between these two programs and coaching staffs is kind of fascinating. We know that Kayla was an assistant at BC for the last five years before taking over for SU this season. This is also a huge game for SU assistant coach Kenzie Kent, who was a two-sport star at BC, returning to her alma mater and coaching against her own mother and sister, who are an assistant and graduate assistant on the BC staff, respectively. So I guess the proper word might be familial rather than just familiar.
Alright, it’s time for a top-5, ACC matchup with massive implications. Let’s get it!