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NJCAA Early Season Trends – JuCo Report

Today’s JuCo Report focuses on some interesting NJCAA early season trends for 2016. Who’s UP, who’s DOWN, and who’s shocking the world right now? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

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First we’ll cover the official NJCAA Poll, then we get on to all the other good stuff!

2016 NJCAA Lacrosse Top 10 Poll

The poll shows rank, team names, votes received in parentheses, record, last week’s results, and last week’s poll placement. That’s a lot of info in a tight space, but it gets you caught up quick.

1) Onondaga (60) 2-0 – Last week’s #1 – defeated Howard 15-2
2) Essex (51) 3-0 – Last week’s #2 – defeated Delaware Tech 27-0
2) Nassau (51) 3-0 – Last week’s #3 – defeated Ocean County 22-2, defeated Anne Arundel 28-13
4) Genesee (42) 1-0 – Last week’s #4 – did not play, 3 top 10 games coming up
5) Howard (35) 1-1 – Last week’s #6 – lost to OCC 15-2
6) Anne Arundel (25) 1-1 – Last week’s #5 – lost to Nassau 28-13
7) Suffolk (24) 3-0 – Last week’s #7 – defeated Harford 10-8
8) Union County (14) 3-1 – Last week’s #10 – defeated ASA 15-8
9) Monroe (12) 1-0 – Last week NR – defeated Delhi 26-5
10) FLCC (10) 1-1 – Last week’s #8 – did not play

Herkimer (3) 0-1, Dean (2) 1-2, and Frederick (1) 1-0 all received votes.

2016 New NJCAA Video!

First goal of the season for Herk!

You can also stream Herkimer’s games on YouTube, HERE! The next stream is for March 15th vs Dean CC.  CCBC Essex is doing the same thing, and you can access the games via CCBC Essex’s YouTube Channel. The next men’s game is March 12th against Genesee.

Former JuCo Players Going HAM

Last week we talked about former Genesee player Tyler Skowronski, and he is STILL tearing up for D3 Keuka. Keuka is 2-0, and Skowronski has 12 goals and 2 assists in those two games. Can he score 7 points a game, every game? That’s a tall order, but Tyler is off to a red hot start!

NJCAA Early Season Trends

ONONDAGA Falling? – I am not about to argue that Onondaga is down as a solid NJCAA early season trend, and a 31 goal win over FLCC says the notion of a weaker OCC is likely false, but that 15-2 win over Howard does have me scratching my head just a little. Just a little, I promise. Listen, the TWO goals allowed to a potential Top 10 team in Howard is downright scary. That’s lock down defense on display. I don’t know if another team in the country could pull that off…

But the 15 goals? That’s a different story from what we’ve typically seen from OCC. Last year, for example, they scored at least 23 goals in every game but FOUR. All four were against Genesee or Essex, and of those only one game saw the Lazers put up less than 15 goals. So 15 is actually kind of low for OCC, historically speaking.

Now this could all be rubbish; simply overblown analysis drawn from a single game (that’s likely), but if it holds, it creates a potentially awesome match up with a high powered offensive opponent in either Nassau or a high powered defense in Essex. Maybe Genesee or Monroe can even get in the mix!

NCC is up next for OCC, and with the Lions putting up 28 goals on Anne Arundel, you have to think they have some serious weapons on O, and a good chance at a competitive game. After Nassau, OCC plays Essex and then Genesee. This is a dangerous stretch for Onondaga. That doesn’t happen often, and NCC is a huge threat looming.

Howard Slowly Climbing – Year over year improvement can be tough at any NJCAA program as teams only get each class of players for two years, but Howard seems to be making a one spot leap, at least according to Laxpower, over the last couple of years. Last year they finished at #5 in the Power Rankings, the year before was #7. In 2013 they also finished at #7, but in 2012 they finished at #8. In 2011, you guessed it! #10. #10 was also their 2010 Power Rank, and in 2009, they were #11.

What’s even MORE miraculous about this slow ascent is that THREE different coaches have each run the team during this period of time. Erik Foust has been there for three years now, and he is clearly taking the program to new levels of success. Will it continue in 2016 with Howard clawing their way to the #4 spot? Or could they climb higher? It only gets harder near the top!

Can JuCo Work In New England? – Dean College is located in Massachusetts and it is the only NJCAA men’s lacrosse in New England. The Bulldogs play a mix of MCLA and NCLL local teams at times, but mostly play New York NJCAA opponents. They opened the season with a 14-13 OT loss to FLCC which would have put them in the Top 10 nationally. This is a program that is getting closer, but without any regional opponents, it’s hard for JuCo lacrosse to make much noise in a D1 and D3 lacrosse rich area.

Will Cape Cod Community College, Bunker Hill, Mass Bay, or Springfield Tech ever start lacrosse programs? It could only help!, and there are certainly kids who would play at many of those schools. I hope for continued success for Dean, as I think it could draw additional teams to the JuCo Men’s Lacrosse Ranks. This is less of an NJCAA early season trend, but I can’t help but wonder.

NJCAA Rolls On

Lots of big games are coming up in the new few weeks, so pay attention, and SEND YOUR TIPS in to the JuCo Report for next week!