|Does Getting Those Ground Balls Really Matter?|
Statistics and Their Relationship to Win-Loss Records in Menís and Womenís Division I Lacrosse
How did this year's NCAA champions, Johns Hopkins and Northwestern, fare where the statistical categories analyzed here are concerned?
Johns Hopkins fell in the top/best group statistically for shooting percentage, opponent shooting percentage, shooting percentage margin, EMO success, and clearing success margin. They were in the next best group for ground ball margin and face-off win percentage. Only on opponent EMO success did they fall in the bottom group.
Three-peater Northwestern placed in the top statistical group for every category we looked at except free position success rate (where they were in the second best group) and clearing success margin (for which we had no data).
Overall, it should be evident that the indicators we've examined for Division I have a moderate to strong impact on how teams tend to fare in the win-loss column and in the LaxPower computer ratings. And they should, as many of the statistics are related to possession, and usually only good things can happen when you have the ball. Statistics like ground balls, face-offs, and turnovers can also be associated with uneven numbers and unsettled situations, which can often be exploited.
That concludes our statistical tour. We leave it to you to see where your team falls and whether you think their statistical performance sheds light on their record for the season.