It looks like the Maryland Terrapins men’s lacrosse team may have taken a big hit before their inaugural Big Ten season.
According to a report by Donnie Webb of Syracuse.com, rising sophomore attacker and ACC Freshman of the Year Connor Cannizzaro is leaving the program and transferring to the University of Denver.
Cannizzaro, who started all 17 games for Maryland and finished third on the team in points with 38 total (26 goals, 8 assists), played a crucial role in helping Maryland advance to the semifinal game of the NCAA championship in 2013. Cannizzaro was a goal scoring machine for Maryland all season long, logging four hat trick performances and nine multi-goal games. The New York native was considered the other half of the top recruiting class in the nation for Maryland (the other being Matt Rambo).
While the reasons for Cannizzaro’s transfer to Denver are unclear, it’s worth mentioning that his older brother is also on the lacrosse team there. Cannizzaro will also be eligible to play right away without penalty, given that Denver and Maryland aren’t competitors in any currently feasible scenarios. Per the Syracause.com article:
“Since Denver is not in the Big Ten and I don’t play football or basketball, can play right away,” Cannizzaro said, “and won’t lose a year of eligibility. I choose Denver because for many reasons. It’s is a good academic university in a beautiful area with a top lacrosse program.”
Losing Cannizzaro would hurt a whole lot more had the Terrapins not picked up another very elite attack prospect earlier this month. Dylan Maltz opted to transfer from Syracuse to Maryland this summer, and will be eligible to play immediately. Maltz, who played high school lacrosse at Stone Bridge in Ashburn, Virginia (about an hour from College Park), only appeared in six games for the Orange last season. He finished tenth on the team in scoring with 3 goals and 1 assist during that time.
Still, Maltz can flat out play (regardless of his 5’8″ frame) when it comes to lacrosse. He remains Stone Bridge’s all-time leader in goals (190), assists (130), points (320) and ground balls (198). His father won a championship at Syracuse, his brother was a very good goal scorer all four years of his career there, and Maltz was highly likely to play next season or the one after that.
Maryland’s got some very good attack on the roster, and more coming along, but adding a talent like Maltz (even if it is to replace Cannizzaro), means the Terps should be just fine. Hats off to coach Tillman for maintaining that relationship.