In this new segment on LAS, Ryan Kuhn breaks down three of the biggest Division III games of the previous week, including Lynchburg lacrosse’s toppling of No. 1 Salisbury.
What a weekend! With lacrosse back in full swing across all divisions, there were some exciting matchups that took place. Everyone in DIII lacrosse had their eyes focused on Salisbury-Lynchburg, but lets not forget about some other heavy hitters that played this past weekend, and we certainly have some teams flying under the radar.
2021 will be the year of upsets across all divisions. In light of the pandemic, teams are playing multiple games against the same team, they’re having more travel restrictions limit their scheduling abilities, and consistency will be an issue all season. All of these things open the doors up for more blowout games and lots of potential upsets. Home-field advantage will be huge, and we’re seeing more reasons as to why 2021 will be a year unlike any other.
Lynchburg Lacrosse Knocks Salisbury Off No. 1 Perch – DIII Big Three Breakdown
Lynchburg (10) vs Salisbury (8)
Where to start?
There hasn’t been a championship conversation in the last 20 years that didn’t include Salisbury, and 2021 is no different. Salisbury is loaded and deservedly got a lot of preseason attention. Lynchburg wasn’t interested in all of the talk and took down the Seagulls at home in what was a game of funs. Salisbury dominated on the stat sheet early but was unable to pull away from the Hornets. The ‘Gulls seemed unable to get inside the Lynchburg defense and allowed the goalie to gain lots of confidence after the initial scoring run. Make no mistake, though; Salisbury isn’t going anywhere, and it will get things sorted out as the season goes. Lynchburg executed a great game plan, and this puts it in an excellent position moving forward. To make things better, it avoided a big-game hangover as it dispatched St. Mary’s fewer than 24 hours later.
Side note: Lynchburg has one of the best home venues in all of college lacrosse. It was amazing seeing fans in the stands, and hearing what the environment sounded like through the livestream made it feel like we are finally getting past all of this.
Stevenson (13) vs Stevens Tech (8)
Another great early-season matchup between two programs that are always in the mix. Coach Peluso at Stevens and Coach Cantabene always have exciting teams, and this year is the same. Both programs will be in the mix and near the top in their conferences, and this was a great early-season matchup. Stevenson got their season off to a good start by beating Stevens in Hoboken, which is never an easy thing to do. Stevens got off to a hot start by going up 5-1 early, but the Mustangs clawed their way back into the game and took off running on their way to a 13-8 win. The Mustangs have a huge test at the end of the month when they play York.
Baldwin Wallace (10) vs John Carroll (9)
The OAC is one of those conferences that doesn’t get a lot of love but has some very young and talented teams. There is a lot of talent sprinkled throughout these rosters, and that was clear in this game. JCU has been a mainstay at the top of the league, but other schools have done a great job at closing that gap. John Carroll saw a three-goal lead at the half disappear as Baldwin Wallace stole an early-season game. The unique thing about the OAC this year is that teams are playing each other twice, so we will see a rematch of these two teams on April 7. In between then and now, both teams will have some major tests in conference, because schools like Ohio Northern and Capital are right in the mix. This is going to be a fun year in the OAC, and it is a conference that should be getting a little more love.
Can’t get enough DIII lacrosse content? Check back each week for more articles like this and to keep an eye on movement across the landscape. Salisbury losing to Lynchburg is sure to change up the IL DIII poll.