There is a tie for first between Loyola and Massachusetts in the latest United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse rankings. These two programs have been established for quite a while now, but neither has ever experienced the amount of success they have so far in 2012. Elsewhere in the lacrosse world, The Big House hosted its first edition of the Ohio State – Michigan lacrosse rivalry. Unfortunately the Maize and Blue fell to their archrivals 12-9, but something tells me Ann Arbor will take November’s 40-34 victory on the gridiron and be satisfied. Now on to the Big East…
1 – Notre Dame (9-1, 4-0 Big East)
The Irish are currently ranked fifth in the country following a 9-7 victory here on the Hilltop this past Sunday. Notre Dame’s defense allowed just two goals in the final 36:47 of gameplay as they erased a 5-1 halftime deficit. Goalie John Kemp was named Big East defensive player of the week after he made 13 saves in the win. Notre Dame is now riding an eight-game win streak.
Remaining Regular Season Schedule: @ Villanova 4/21, vs. Syracuse 4/28,
2 – Villanova (8-4, 4-0)
The Wildcats became the first team to clinch a berth in the inaugural Big East Lacrosse tournament after they outlasted St. Johns 10-8 on Saturday. Middie Matt Bell earned Big East offensive player of the week honors after his four-goal one-assist performance against the Red Storm. ‘Nova is 11th in the national rankings and has all but locked up their second straight NCAA Tournament appearance.
Remaining Regular Season Schedule: vs. Notre Dame 4/21, @ Providence 4/28
3 – Syrac*se (6-5, 3-1)
The Orange were dominated by Cornell in Ithaca 12-6 back on April 10th before they bounced back with a dominating 19-6 victory over Rutgers in the ESPNU Warrior Classic in Charlotte on Saturday. With only 16 teams in the NCAA Tournament field, another loss could well mean No. 15 Syracuse would miss their first postseason since 2007 [ed. note: Let the record show that our hearts would bleed for them]. I’m fairly certain I’m not alone in hoping that they lose the rest of their games and miss out on this year’s tourney.
Remaining Regular Season Schedule: vs. Georgetown 4/21, @ Notre Dame 4/28
4 – St. Johns (6-5, 2-3)
The Red Storm blew a 7-6 lead after three quarters to fall to Villanova 10-8 on Saturday despite attack Kevin Cernuto netting his fourth hat trick of the season. The Johnnies fall under the category of “others receiving votes” in the latest top 20 rankings, not too bad for a program who has never received any real national recognition. With a win in their Big Eat finale against lowly Providence, the Red Storm can clinch a bid in the Big East Tournament where a magical run could earn the program its first Tournament appearance.
Remaining Regular Season Schedule: vs. Providence 4/21, @ Drexel 4/28
5 – Georgetown (5-6, 1-3)
Oh, how the mighty have fallen. Between 2000 and 2007, the Georgetown men’s lacrosse team was one game away from the final four in seven out of eight NCAA Tournaments, but never managed to make it over the hump. Barring a magical late-season run, the Hoyas are set to miss the tournament for a fifth straight season. Dave Urick’s team blew a 5-1 halftime lead to Notre Dame on Sunday to mark the Hoyas’ third Big East loss in their last three games. Lacrosse is a prep-school sport dominated by the Northeastern part of the country. How are we not better?
Remaining Regular Season Schedule: @ Syracuse 4/21, vs. Rutgers 4/27
6 – Rutgers (5-8, 1-4)
The Scarlet Knights were embarrassed on national television by Syracuse 19-6 this past Saturday. The lopsided loss means they have been outscored by their opponents 46-19 in their past three games. Of the three goalies who logged over 125 minutes for the Scarlet Knights this season, not one has been able to post a save percentage of over .500.
Remaining Regular Season Schedule: vs. Michigan 4/21, @ Georgetown 4/27
7 – Providence (1-11, 0-4)
It has been a rough year for the Friars to say the least, but Providence had a chance to salvage some pride as the faced off against crosstown rival Brown last Tuesday. The old cliché goes that records are thrown out the window in rivalry games, but unfortunately for Providence, even when you ignore their record they are still just not a good team. Brown won the game 11-6 and extended the Friars’ losing streak to nine games.
Remaining Regular Season Schedule: @ St. Johns 4/21, vs. Villanova 4/28