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Virginia Tech Men's Lacrosse MCLA 2015 vs Texas State

Five MCLA Squads On The Rise

We’re halfway through the 1st month of 2016 we’re one step closer to the opening weekend of the MCLA!

We are already half way through the first month of 2016 and with every day that passes, we get one step closer to the opening weekend of the MCLA! Now, if you didn’t pay attention to the league last year, you may want to clue yourself in! Some powerhouse teams are looking like they are slipping into a rebuilding phase, for one reason or another, leaving the door open for fresh teams to make a run in the playoffs. This year is going to shake things up in the rankings a bit and one you don’t want to miss out.

Some important dates you may want to pay attention to are:

  1. Preseason Under Armour MCLA Coaches Poll will be released on January 27th
  2. The 1st rankings of the regular season come out of February 17th

Before games get started, it’s always fun to speculate and try to predict who is going to do what. So let’s take a look at five MCLA squads on the rise. All of these teams have a chance to make the MCLA National Tournament this year; and for some it could be the first time ever.

San Diego State University (16-5)

San Diego State University

The Aztecs surprised many people last year by posting a 16-5 record, winning the SLC, and making an appearance at the National Tournament.  Even though their trip to Nationals didn’t last long due to a 1st round match up against Grand Canyon University, they definitely showed a lot of improvement. The Aztecs lost by 5 in their second match up against the Lopes compared to 8 during the regular season and aren’t looking to take a step back this year.

Even though San Diego lost two of their top three scorers, they only lost 5 seniors (from what I could tell on the MCLA website). Coach Charlie Jackson will be looking for a few more guys to step up and take this team farther than they did last year. Making it to the National Championships again may not be easy for the Aztecs, but something they can achieve.

Toughest Games in 2016:

  1. Grand Canyon
  2. Colorado
  3. ASU

Texas State (12-5)

Bucky Desadier Texas State lacrosse

With a tough defensive loss to Colorado ending the Bobcats 2015 season they’ll be looking to get back to the National Tournament once again and build on their experience from last year. After winning the Lone Star Alliance (LSA) last year, they’ll be looking to capture the conference title again in order to get them back in the National Tournament. Co-Head Coaches, Kyle Saunders and Michael Brand, will be looking to move forward in the 2016 season. Anything less than last year will be a disappointment.

Texas State will be leaning on their defense more this season since they graduated some of their top scorers from the 2015 season. With no power house teams scheduled for the 2016 season, the Bobcats will have to win their conference to make sure they get to UC Irvine for the National Tournament again.

Toughest Games in 2016:

  1. University of Texas
  2. Florida State

Virginia Tech (18-1)

Virginia Tech Hokie lax vs Georgia 2015 MCLA SELC Tournament

Although many people may not see Virginia Tech as a “dark horse” after having an undefeated regular season last year, I am keeping them on this list for multiple reasons. After losing in the semi-finals to Colorado by 1, the only goal for this team now is to win the entire thing. The Hokies will have high expectations coming into the season. We will see if they have put in the work during the off-season to get over the hump and make it to the Championship game.

After only graduating three players, this team is going to be experienced and deep. I’m sure they’re the favorite to win their conference and will get a good seed in the tournament. After losing 2 senior attack men, it’ll be up to the midfield to keep this offense rolling.

Toughest Games in 2016:

  1. Boston College
  2. Michigan State
  3. Florida State

Georgia Tech (17-2)

Virginia Tech Hokie lax vs Georgia Tech 2015 MCLA SELC Tournament

Ken Lovic and the Yellow Jackets will be looking to do big things this year after a 17-2 season along with only losing one senior. They’ll be looking to get revenge on Virginia Tech, claim the SELC title, and guarantee themselves another trip to Nationals.

The Yellow Jackets strength of schedule isn’t very strong and it will be interesting to see if that helps or hurts them. A lot of their players already have one game at Nationals under their belt, will it be enough for them to make a deep run into the tournament? Only time will tell.

Toughest Games in 2016:

  1. Virginia Tech
  2. Michigan State
  3. Florida State

Boise State (10-4)

Adam Smith Wolf of the MCLA Boise State

Okay, I might be a little bias since I joined the team this season, but I chose to join the program for a reason. Coming off the best season in Boise State’s history, the Broncos are only looking to improve. After only graduating four players and adding more talent through freshman and transfers, head coach Jon Mundy is making sure his team doesn’t take a step back. Along with great leadership coming from the attack with senior Adam Smith leading the way, the Broncos may surprise a lot of people this season.

The Broncos will be looking to claim their first ever PNCLL championship and make their first trip to Nationals after a loss to end last season against conference rival Simon Fraser. With the schedule the Broncos have put together, it will be great to see how they hold up against a lot of the top teams in the league.

Toughest Games in 2016:

  1. Grand Canyon
  2. Colorado
  3. Colorado State
[mks_separator style=”solid” height=”2″] Which way were you shaking your head while reading this list? Let us know in the comments below!

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