If I’m going to make a ridiculous, over the top declaration like “2017 NJCAA Lacrosse is the BEST” in my title, I had better be able to back it up. Thankfully, I don’t have to back anything up at all this week, because the men on the field did all that and more. All I have to do is report the results, and get into a little bit of the nitty gritty. What a weekend!
First we’ll hit up the most recent poll, then we’ll get to the week’s action. Strap in, it was one wild ride.
NJCAA Top Ten Poll
Top Ten Ranking, Current Record, Vote Points, Last Week’s Rank
1) Onondaga, 4-0, 60, 2nd
2) Harford, 5-1, 54, 3rd
3) Nassau, 3-2, 46, 5th
4) Howard, 4-1, 41, 4th
5) Genesee, 2-1, 39, 1st
6) Anne Arundel, 2-2, 27, 7th
7) Ocean County, 2-1, 23, 8th
8) Suffolk, 0-3, 13, 10th
9) Monroe, 0-1, 12, 9th
10) Frederick, 3-1, 8, Unranked
Others Receiving Votes: FLCC, Delaware Tech, Union County
Nassau Beats #1 Genesee in OT
Genesee traveled down to Long Island to take on Nassau, and the home side Lions won an epic game, 11-10, in OT. While snow covered the surrounding fields, the turf was cleared off, the game went down, and I only missed being there in person because I was coaching myself. I thought this game would be good, but it turns out it was great! At least if you’re a fan of good games, or a supporter of Nassau. But I digress…
Currently, there aren’t any stats out, or other info, but I found a photo of the scoreboard, the snowy surroundings, and the final score. It’s something!
Topsy Turvy Top 5
While Onondaga is in familiar territory with a 4-0 start, they had a tight game with Nassau, and beat Essex this weekend 15-10. Sure, it was 10-3 late in the third quarter, but Essex kept fighting, and it showed this OCC team MIGHT not be quite the same machine as we’ve seen in the past. Of course, they also might go undefeated and start blowing teams out regularly. That could also happen. It’s still early!
BUT, it does seem like 2017 possesses more potential for true parity than any season of NJCAA lacrosse in recent memory. 2016 was kind of amazing with Genesee taking their first ever title, so the fact that 2017 could be even more unpredictable is definitely exciting for fans.
Let’s take a look at the “next” group of teams, after undefeated OCC.
You’ve got Nassau. They just beat #1 Genesee in OT, and they played Onondaga to a 3 goal loss on the road, sticking around and fighting the whole time.
However, Nassau also has a one goal road loss to Harford. While that game was on a Sunday after Nassau had played Saturday, and Harford had a whole week to prep, it does show that no win is guaranteed, and makes a case for Harford to be considered a contender, and apart from their loss to the Stevenson JV, they could go undefeated, looking at their schedule.
I already mentioned Genesee, but I think they are worth mentioning again. GCC lost 4 games last year and STILL won the title. Counting them out now would be nothing short of foolish. Last year they lost to Nassau by 3, Essex in OT, and Onondaga twice (by 5 and 8), before beating Nassau 8-7 in the semis, and then knocking OCC off in the finals 13-12 in OT. The Cougars still have a ton of talent, and might even be better than last year’s team. Like I said, anything is possible in 2017.
And if you’re looking for a team that could be the GCC of 2017, look no further than Howard. This team intrigues me greatly. After a 1-0 forfeit loss to Finger Lakes, Howard has rolled off big win after big win, and while they haven’t played against Top 5 talent yet, they have put up Top 5 scoring margins over some solid 6-12 range teams.
CCBC Essex, on the other hand, has played Top 5 talent, and while they’ve lost twice, it was only by only 2 goals to Genesee, and by 5 goals to Onondaga. Wins are wins, and we credit GCC and OCC for the Ws, but the margins do make me think twice about Essex’s potential as the season progresses. GCC had a couple of losses like that last year… so don’t count Essex out either!
Ok, that was actually a topsy turvy Top 6, and not a Top 5, but that’s just how interesting the 2017 NJCAA Lacrosse season is shaping up to be. Not my fault.
If you want PHOTOS or VIDEO of YOUR team included in the JuCo Report, send them to me at Connor@Lacrosseallstars.com! Same goes for tips, info, etc!
Recent 2017 Game Results
Thursday, March 16th
Harford 26 – Southern Maryland 0
Friday, March 17th
Hudson Valley 12 – Brookdale 8
Saturday, March 18th
Ancilla 16 – Ball State 12
Brookdale 15 – Catonsville 3
Onondaga 15 – Essex 10
Frederick 14 – Morris 5
Howard 18 – Ocean County 5
Monroe – Tompkins Cortland – Postponed
Nassau 11 – Genesee 10 OT
Southern Maryland 15 – Potomac State 14
Union County 19 – Delaware Tech 10
Sunday, March 19th
Essex – Morris
Harford 27 – Finger Lakes 5
Big Upcoming 2017 NJCAA Lacrosse Games
Friday, March 24th – Harford Vs Ocean County – I’m picking Harford to win this one, and I’m picking them to win by a good margin, but the question I want answered is how big of a margin will it be? Ocean County is a good team, and while they need to get past Hudson Valley on the 21st, this is still a great test for them. They lost to Howard 18-5, so will Ocean County raise its game for this one? A good test to tell us more about both teams.
Saturday, March 25th – Essex Vs Anne Arundel – who is the better of these two schools right now? No more arguing, it’s game time. This should be a hotly contested, exciting match up to check out.
Saturday, March 25th – Genesee Vs Onondaga – 2016 title game rematch, GCC just loss in OT, OCC has had some close games, and there is a ton of ridiculous talent on both rosters. What, exactly, is not to LOVE about this game? Nothing. It’s all good.
Saturday, March 25th – Nassau Vs Suffolk – Unfortunately, I do not think this will be a close game, which is sad, because the Nassau County vs Suffolk County rivalry is always awesome in just about anything. Get these guys in an argument about heroes (or hoagies or subs or grinders or whatever you call them) and it’s on. Get them playing each other in lacrosse? It’s even onner. Or more on. It’s serious, that’s what I’m trying to say.
BONUS – Women’s 2017 JuCo Video!
Good luck to all the teams competing this week. JuCo Report… OUT!