After a brief hiatus, I am back to take another stab at ‘MY D3 TOP 20‘, but this time I’m offering up a midweek D3 lacrosse top 20, taking WED games into account!
There has been no shortage of great games these last few weeks with conference play beginning and numerous upsets that I certainly didn’t see coming. We got some more telling results in yesterday, so let’s take a stab at this
MidWeek D3 Lacrosse Top 20 Poll!
It seems like the #15 through 20 spots are getting more activity that a NYC subway stop. Guys are entering, and sometimes leaving, in the same week, with some teams popping in and out on a weekly basis.
This is good for the sport. I repeat, this is GOOD for the sport.
With there being so many teams at the D3 level, it is good to see some new names up here. On the flip side, it has to leave some of the faithful alumni from traditional powerhouse programs scratching their heads, wondering where their alma mater is. It’s 2016, and the days of your top four winning it every year are long gone.
I know we are only half way through, but is this year someone new breaks through? Seems like D3 lacrosse junkies are asking that every year, while the Jumbos from Tufts just keep throwing shade.
1. Salisbury – Big week for the Gulls facing three teams that have all received top 20 attention. Will they have a hiccup or continue to take care of business and be one of the first teams to solidify a spot in the NCAA tourney.
2. RIT – I am a big believer in winning the one goal games throughout the regular season and preparing you better for tournament time. Well, the Tigers got by Cabrini and Middlebury by the hair on their chin. A win against the Larries seemed tight, but could’ve been larger. In order for them to make a run, it looks like it is going to come down to the ball stoppers, where it looks like they are still splitting time in cage.
3. Tufts – After dropping one to Stevenson, the Jumbos has recovered nicely. The Trinity game is a head scratcher, but seeing your go-to guy put up 12 points that game, and then 11 more between the next two you have to feel good. The always challenging NESCAC schedule looms.
4. Denison – Could be flipped with York, but I like the quality of their wins a little more. They take the four spot. Is the committee still deciding whether to put them in the North or South? Is that still a thing?
5. York – Lot of great wins, and only one loss to a Lynchburg team that is confusing. As a somewhat new team to the top 5, it’ll be interesting if they have the staying power. My gut tells me yes.
6. Bowdoin – Besides dropping their first game of the year to Amherst, they have been rolling with a couple of nice wins agains Stevens and Middlebury (who some have ranked higher), and Bates yesterday. Polar bears cannon balling into the top 10 at the half way point! Who would have thought?
7. St. Lawrence – Looks to be the second team in the Liberty, that Union supplanted for the last 3-4 years. The game against RIT was the first of two or potentially three games this year.
8. Amherst – The NESCAC doing NESCAC things. A loss to Middlebury isn’t the end of the world, and either the WNEU loss now that they are sitting inside the top 20.
9. Gettysburg – Sitting on two losses against my #1 and #5 teams. They have been hovering around the top 10 all year, it is about time they rattle off a few nice wins in a row.
10. Middlebury – At 5-4 a lot of people may be wondering why so high, but there has to be some value in losing the way they are. This is a team that a lot of people liked at the beginning of the year too. If two of their four losses were wins, I bet a lot of people would have them in their top three or four.
11. Nazareth – They have beaten who they were supposed to beat, and may be relying on their SUNY Cortland win a little much, who slide into the top 20 midweek after a Union win. The Ithaca game this weekend will give us an early read on who is going to into the E8 tournament as the top seed.
12. Bates – Tough midweek loss to the Polar Bears. Still looking for a marquis win in my mind. There are plenty of teams with more/better wins.
13. Ithaca – My biggest move for a team this week. Something tells me that Ithaca is the real, when people may have been slating Stevens and Naz in the E8 finals. Not so fast.
14. OWU – I only have them at #14 because they hun THIRTY on Hiram….joking aside, they too have beaten who they should have, and may be getting votes because of the one goal Salisbury loss. Crash course with Denison in two weeks.
15. Stevenson – After feeling the wrath of RIT early on, the Mustangs have been trying to find their identity, and I think they are starting to after ripping off wins against Tufts, Lynchburg and Cabrini. All who are mainstays in the top 20 week after week. You have to expect some bumps and bruises when you play the schedule they do.
16. Cabrini – Need to focus on not slipping up before facing Salisbury later this month. A loss in their conference will raise a lot of eyebrows.
17. WNEU – Big wins over Stevenson and Amherst really help, but the loss to Keene State and SLU has be doubting them. Should be able to bring home the CCC crown with Endicott having a slightly down year record wise, even though they are battling great teams tough.
18. Ursinus – Another team that has floated right around this ranking for what seems to be all season. The Dickison win is nice. Looking forward to the game against the Bullets in two weeks. Whatever team wins that one will be heading into conference tourney time flying high.
19. Dickinson – A handful of quality wins, and a couple of losses against ranked teams. Good for the #19 spot.
20. Cortland – Like the Cabrini win and value their losses (similar to Midd.). Playing tough teams which will help them come SUNY conference time. Can’t count out a team led by Beville. Not to mention, they are going to be in a lot of games with their Face-off guy (Baldwin).
Honorable Mention: Roanoke, Stevens, Frostburg St., RPI, Union, CNU