For years, the Baltimore area has been considered one of the nation’s best for lacrosse talent. So, it’s no surprise that the country’s best boys’ and girls’ lacrosse team resides in Baltimore.

ESPN has tabbed Calvert Hall College and McDonogh School as its No. 1 boys’ and girls’ team, respectively, in its preseason Top 50. It’s familiar terrority for the Eagles, who’s been the area’s No. 1 team the past three seasons and ESPN’s mythical national champions in 2010 and 2011.

Led by senior Taylor Cummings (University of Maryland), the nation’s No. 1 recruit, the Owings Mills school enter 2012 with a  51-game winning streak (sixth longest in area history) and hasn’t loss to a local squad since the 2008 IAAM A Conference finals to John Carroll School.

Bryn Mawr School, last spring’s IAAM A semifinalists, is No. 4. The Mawrtians featured one of the nation’s best goalies in Molly Wolf, who was selected Varsity Sports Network’s Defensive Player of the Year last spring. Wolf, a senior, will play for Loyola University next year.

Notre Dame Prep, IAAM A runner-up in 2009 and 2010, is fifth, with last year’s finalist, Roland Park Country School, 14th. Defending state champs Marriotts Ridge (Class 3A/2A) and Severna Park (4A./3A) are 19th and 24th, respectively, and Fallston is 25th.

taylor cummingsWith the bulk of its roster intact from last year’s runner-up showing in the MIAA A Conference, Calvert Hall College gained the preseason’s No. 1 over the 2011 mythical national champ Haverford School from Pennsylvania. The Towson school is led by Lacrosse Magazine’s Top 50 recruits Patrick Kelly (committed to North Carolina), Evan Connell (North Carolina), Ryan Brown and Kelton Black (both committed to Johns Hopkins), and arguably the nation’s top junior in Stephen Kelly, who’s the youngest member of the U.S. National under-19 squad.

Gilman School, which denied the Cardinals in last spring’s MIAA A title game at Unitas Stadium, is 14th in the ESPN rankings with Loyola Blakefield 15th. St. Paul’s School, the 2010 MIAA A champ, is 20th.