UMBC and Loyola open their 2010 Division I lacrosse seasons Saturday, and the key for both will be the first quarter. Loyola is at Navy and UMBC hosts Delaware, and both Navy and Delaware dominated in their season openers nearly a week ago.
Delaware beat up on Saint Joseph's, 15-5, and Navy defeated Virginia Military Institute, 16-5. UMBC and Loyola have to play well in the first quarter because they aren't used to competing at game speed yet. Teams can practice as much as possible, but until they play in a game, they're still at practice speed. Loyola coach Charley Toomey has already warned his team because that's how Loyola jumped on Towson in the Tigers' season opener a year ago.
UMBC and Loyola will both be interesting to watch this season. The Greyhounds should have a strong team and make the playoffs this season. The Retrievers are rebuilding with 17 freshmen on the roster. UMBC should struggle early but hit its stride late in the season.