Last Time They Met: After convincingly defeating Pitt during their regular season matchup last year 20-10, the Gophers’ 2017 season unexpectedly ended in a 12-11 upset to the Panthers in the CCLA semifinal last April.
In the Polls: Minnesota dropped five spots to No. 22 in the Under Armour MCLA Coaches Polls after losses to No. 10 Michigan State and St. Thomas who is ranked No. 1 in Division II. Pittsburgh meanwhile comes into the weekend unranked.
Milestone Watch: With 47 goals and 44 assists in his career, sophomore attackman Amar Batra is 9 points away from reaching 100 career points.
A Two-Sport Athlete: Niklas Damberg will make his return after spending the past two weekends competing in the USCSA Divisional and Regional races. Damberg is expected to qualify for nationals in the slalom and giant slalom. The Gophers are 0-2 this season without him, losing close games to Michigan State and St. Thomas. With Thomas Luedke out for the season, Minnesota will be relying heavily on Damberg at the faceoff X.
A Maroon Nightmare: Minnesota’s “Maroon” line of Kamal Baker, Malik Ekpenyong, and Chandler Sampson has been on a hot streak. Together, they have contributed 11 goals and 9 assists through three games. As a unit, they have contributed at least 3 goals in each game this season.
The First for #1: Sophomore LSM Thomas Swartout recorded his first career point with an assist to Ely Harel last weekend against St. Thomas.
Around the league:
Last night, No. 1 Grand Canyon opened their season with a visit to No. 11 Cal Poly, defeating Mustangs 8-7 in overtime.
No. 2 Chapman and No. 6 Georgia Tech also went into overtime, with Chapman claiming a 11-10 victory.
No. 14 UC-Santa Barbara upset No. 5 Arizona State at home, 8-7 in 4 overtimes.
Unranked Boise State took down their conference opponent No. 13 Oregon 17-10.
No. 21 Florida State defeated No. 23 Texas A&M, 15-14.
Lacrosse Double-Header: After the Minnesota–Pitt game, two UMLC DII heavyweights will take the field as No. 8 Minnesota–Duluth will take on No. 1 St. Thomas.
2,392: The Panthers have traveled 868 miles to Minnesota to play the Gophers. They will then immediately hit the road and travel 671 miles to Mount Pleasant, Mich. for their Sunday game against Central Michigan. It is then a 853 mile trip back to Pittsburgh. That's approximately 30 hours of traveling, enough time to watch three seasons of Game of Thrones.