CHAPEL HILL - The defending NCAA champion University of North Carolina women's lacrosse team heads to Maryland this weekend for the biggest weekend of its fall season.
The Tar Heels will take part in the U.S. Naval Academy's tournament in Annapolis, Md., on Saturday. On Sunday at noon, UNC will scrimmage Northwestern at the Severn School in Severn, Md.
Carolina is slated to face Navy, James Madison, Notre Dame, Stanford on Saturday in the event, which will use a revised rain schedule. Each scrimmage will have a 35-minute running clock and no halftimes. There will be a five-minute changeover between games.
After Saturday's scrimmages, the Tar Heels will prepare for Northwestern. Carolina beat the Wildcats twice last year, including an 11-8 win in Chapel Hill in the regular season and an 11-4 win in the NCAA Tournament semifinals in Villanova, Pa.
On Saturday Oct. 26, the Tar Heels will wrap up their fall at Duke's tournament in Durham, N.C.
Carolina won the 2013 NCAA championship with a 13-12, triple-overtime victory over Maryland in the national title game in Villanova, Pa.
Leading scorer and national player of the year Kara Cannizzaro and three other seniors are lost to graduation, but the Tar Heels will return four of their top five scorers from last season. Levy also signed the nation's top-rated recruiting class, which has enrolled this fall and will take the field as freshmen next spring.