Surging Richmond Enters Nike/USA Lacrosse Division I Women's Top 20

PHOTO COURTESY OF RICHMOND ATHLETICS

Freshman Grace Muldoon assisted the goal that proved to be the winner in Richmond's 11-10 win over former No. 16 Stanford.


Calling the past week of Division I women’s lacrosse “quiet” wouldn’t be fair. Several teams made statements and others bolstered their already impressive resumes.

But there wasn’t the same cascade of upsets like the previous weekend. Liberty and Richmond earned the week’s notable wins — Liberty a 15-14 overtime win over formerly No. 20 Virginia Tech and Richmond an 11-10 win over then-No. 16 Stanford — but neither result was the type of rankings-shaking outcome.

To that end, much of the Nike/USA Lacrosse Division I Women’s Top 20 looks like it did last Monday. The top seven teams stand firm, and other than a flip-flip of Nos. 8 and 9, the top 15 teams enter this week in the same spot they ended the last.

It’s the bottom quarter of the Top 20 that required some tinkering, with two teams dropping out to create space for two others.

NIKE/USA LACROSSE
DIVISION I WOMEN’S TOP 20

 
Feb. 28, 2022

W/L

Prev

Next

1

Boston College

5-0

1

3/5 at Louisville

2

North Carolina

5-0

2

3/6 vs. No. 5 Northwestern

3

Syracuse

4-0

3

3/1 at No. 5 Northwestern

4

Maryland

3-0

4

3/1 vs. Delaware

5

Northwestern

3-1

5

3/1 vs. No. 3 Syracuse

6

Stony Brook

1-1

6

3/5 at No. 11 Florida

7

Duke

5-0

7

2/28 vs. East Carolina

8

Michigan

5-0

9

3/2 vs. High Point (in Sparks, Md.)

9

Loyola

2-0

8

2/2 at Penn

10

Princeton

2-0

10

3/5 vs. Cornell

11

Florida

1-2

11

3/5 vs. No. 6 Stony Brook

12

Denver

4-0

12

3/4 vs. UC Davis

13

Virginia

3-3

13

3/6 at No. 20 Notre Dame

14

Rutgers

4-0

14

3/2 vs. Monmouth

15

Drexel

3-0

15

3/1 vs. Navy

16

Vanderbilt

3-0

17

3/4 at Colorado

17

Richmond

4-0

NR

3/4 vs. Coastal Carolina

18

USC

3-0

18

3/8 vs. No. 10 Princeton

19

Jacksonville

2-2

19

3/5 vs. East Carolina

20

Notre Dame

1-4

NR

3/6 vs. No. 13 Virginia

Also considered (alphabetical order): Colorado (3-0), James Madison (2-2), Johns Hopkins (2-1), Navy (4-1), Temple (3-1), UConn (3-1)





z
Nike/USA Lacrosse Rankings
Division I Men | Division I Women
Division II Men | Division II Women
Division III Men | Division III Women

HOT

Michigan (+1)

No. 9 Michigan kept up its string of dominance on Sunday against Towson at Tiger Field, getting four goals from Kaley Thompson and goals from 10 players overall in an 18-6 romp. In their 5-0 start, the Wolverines have outscored opponents 82-31.

Unranked to begin the season after a disappointing conference-only 2021, Michigan took care of business — and then some — in February. The schedule doesn’t ramp up in difficult in late March, but a March 13 date against Denver will be a good barometer.

NOT

Florida (no change)

The Gators got thoroughly dominated in College Park, losing 18-8 to a Maryland team led by graduate transfer Aurora Cordingley. Cordingley put up the best individual offensive performance for Maryland since March 2013 (10 points) against a Florida defense that was on its heels most of the game because of a clear possession disadvantage.

Florida’s problems against Maryland were glaring. The Gators were just 4-for-8 on clears in the first half, lost 24 of 30 draws and shot just 22 times. This is a young team, and there’s plenty of time to fix things, but that was not an encouraging performance.

IN

Richmond (No. 17)

Coming off two one-goal wins, the Spiders enter the Top 20. They most recently beat Stanford 11-10, which might have been enough to get them into the rankings on its own. But Liberty’s win this weekend over Virginia Tech bolstered Richmond’s resume, as the Spiders topped the Flames in overtime on February 19.

We’ll learn a lot more about this Richmond team after seeing how it performs on March 9 at No. 13 Virginia and March 16 at a James Madison team capable of rejoining the Top 20.

Notre Dame (No. 20)

How does a 1-4 team go from “also considered” to No. 20? There really isn’t much process to go by here. It’s a cocktail of the eye test and trusting your gut. The Irish looked uncharacteristically poor against a Michigan team that is now rolling and a Vanderbilt team that appears to have potential.

Notre Dame then followed with hard-fought, one-goal losses to No. 5 Northwestern and No. 3 Syracuse. The Orange even needed overtime to dispatch Notre Dame, which appears to have come a long way in a short period of time. Knowing that Notre Dame boasts on offense with Madison Ahern, Kasey Choma and Jackie Wolak helps in figuring out how to value the Irish.

OUT

Stanford (was No. 16)

The Cardinal are 1-4, and even though Ali Baiocco returned for two games last weekend, the results were no different. Stanford’s freshmen (Ashley Humphrey and Annabel Frist) have been outstanding, but a lack of consistency in other areas have the team in a tough spot at the end of February.

Virginia Tech (was No. 20)

A marquee win over James Madison got the Hokies into the conversation, but losses to Liberty and Louisville are enough to squash any early season momentum they had.

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