Editor’s Note: Guest post by Hayden King
Week 3 resulted in another 10-5 record. That makes it 46-25 on the year, which keeps our picks above 65%. I think the field is starting to show who’s real and who are frauds. Besides some upsets last weekend, we’re feeling pretty good about the top teams.
The upsets I’m referencing are Yale, Loyola, and Delaware. I posed the question after the Yale game: Are Yale frauds or is Penn State on the come up? Penn State played well and I might have a new favorite player in Matt Traynor of Penn State.
Loyola losing to Rutgers was a surprise to me, as I considered Loyola a top 5 team based on how they started the season. Realistically, with this loss I would have Loyola and Rutgers somewhere between 6-10.
As for Delaware, maybe Villanova is just good. They’re 2-1 to start the season, with a win over Penn State, and a loss to Yale. Interesting when you factor in Yale losing to Penn State last weekend. Villanova will receive a top 20 ranking this week so I don’t think they’ll surprise anyone, but it’s a fantastic start to their season.
Wins for the week came from betting on: Richmond, Army, Cornell, Notre Dame, Hopkins, St. Joseph’s, Hobart, Maryland, Harvard, and Virginia.
Notre Dame, Virginia, and Maryland look like three juggernauts to start the season and are my three favorites to win the National Championship. They’re all insanely well-rounded and I can’t find a weakness in any of their games. I said last week that Maryland’s offense looked vulnerable, but Dylan Maltz showed up on Saturday to prove that’s just not true.
Another attractive future is the Duke Blue Devils. I was hesitant betting on them early because I didn’t know how their defense and goalie situation was going to look.
Well, three weeks into the season I’d say they are one of the better first half defenses in college lacrosse. They made Penn and Sam Handley look pedestrian in the first half, and if they can keep that dominance through a full game, I’d be scared to see them in May. With a well rounded offense and fantastic faceoff unit, I think they have everything necessary to make a title run.
Week 4 Games of the Week:
Last week I went 3-0 on games of the week. For those games, I picked Cornell over Lehigh, Notre Dame over Georgetown, and Maryland over Princeton.
Cornell played Lehigh well on Saturday. I said be cautious betting the over as I thought the under hit with 17 points scored. The final score was 12-5 favoring the Big Red, which makes it two years in a row that Cornell has beaten the Mountain Hawks.
As for Notre Dame over Georgetown, this game was more of a blow out than I thought it would be. Notre Dame showcased their blow torch offense and cased Georgetown for 15 goals, while holding them to only 8.
Transfers continue to make a huge impact, as Tevlin notched a goal, 6 ground balls, and 1 caused turnover. Chris Fake also continued to dominate and racked up 3 ground balls on the day. On top of the transfers, the usual candidates (Kavanagh’s) are having a hell of a start to their season. Both brothers are playing at a Tewaaraton level and this team is buzzing.
This was a statement win for Notre Dame, who solidifies their ranking as the #2 team in the country, and makes a strong argument for being #1. Georgetown is still in a freefall, and they are hoping to correct things before the season ends early due to their defeated record (0-3).
Finally, I had Maryland beating Princeton because I felt they would control faceoffs and therefore the time of possession. Luke Wierman secured 65% of his faceoffs, while Princeton struggled through a rotation of 3 different faceoff guys, with only 7 total faceoff wins through the whole game.
Maryland’s defense is looking like world beaters, and you could make the case that the Terps have one of the best strength and conditioning programs in the nation. Their guys come out bigger, stronger, and faster every single year. And with names like Dante Trader Jr., this team is freakishly athletic and has the ability to cover anyone.
For Week 4, we have an incredibly exciting weekend ahead with plenty of Top 20 matchups.
First up, I’m rolling with #3 Cornell over #8 Ohio State on Saturday at OSU. Cornell is 2-0, while Ohio State is 3-1 with their only loss to #1 Virginia. I’m rolling with Cornell for this game because I think they’re starting to hit their stride with bigger wins over Lehigh and Hobart. Further, I think Cornell is a better all around team than Ohio State, but expect this to be a close game.
Second, #5 Princeton will be hosting unranked Georgetown after both teams received a loss last weekend. I feel like Georgetown might have a ‘get-right’ game, but it also feels like Princeton will come out with something to prove after losing to Maryland. Overall, I’m going with Princeton for this one as Georgetown continues its freefall.
For my final game of the week, I’m going with the powerhouse matchup between #2 Notre Dame and #4 Maryland. This is going to be Notre Dame’s toughest out of the season, as Maryland matches up very nicely with the Fighting Irish.
I’m picking #2 Notre Dame in this matchup for three reasons. One, I think Notre Dame’s defense is going to give Maryland’s offense fits, which I believe to be one of Maryland’s weak spots (if you can call it that). Two, I think Notre Dame has the face off unit to compete with Wierman, who’s dominated other teams throughout most of the season.
Finally, the Irish have a top 2 offense, and it remains to be seen if they have a claim to #1 or if it belongs to Virginia. The Maryland defense is very good, but I think Notre Dame will be their kryptonite come Saturday.
Picks for the Weekend
- Denver @ UNC (Saturday)-UNC
- Air Force @ Mercer (Saturday)-Air Force
- Cornell @ Ohio State (Saturday)-Cornell
- Michigan @ Delaware (Saturday)-Delaware
- Hobart @ Robert Morris (Saturday)-Robert Morris
- Villanova @ Hofstra (Saturday)-Villanova
- Lehigh @ Navy (Saturday)-Lehigh
- Yale @ UMass (Saturday)-Yale
- Colgate @ Boston U (Saturday)-Boston
- Georgetown @ Princeton (Saturday)-Princeton
- Vermont @ Harvard (Saturday)-Harvard
- Notre Dame @ Maryland (Saturday)-Notre Dame
- St. Joseph’s @ Hopkins (Saturday)-Hopkins
- Penn @ Penn State (Saturday)-Penn
- Richmond @ Virginia (Saturday)-Virginia
- Jacksonville @ High Point (Saturday)-Jacksonville
- Duke @ Syracuse (Sunday)-Duke
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