Simmons: Looking at the Championships


Here’s what we know so far:

  • Colgate earned the Patriot League automatic qualifier and a trip to the NCAA Tournament
  • Syracuse won the Atlantic Coast Conference and will also be guaranteed a spot in the NCAA Tournament
  • Ivy Seeding: 1. Brown, 2. Cornell, 3. Princeton, 4. Yale
  • B10 Seeding: 1. Johns Hopkins, 2. Maryland, 3. Ohio State, 4. Penn State
  • America East Seeding: 1. Albany, 2. Stony Brook, 3. Vermont, 4. Hartford
  • MAAC Seeding: 1. Marist, 2. Quinnipiac, 3. Detroit, 4. Monmouth
  • Big East Seeding: 1. Denver, 2. Georgetown, 3. Marquette, 4. Villanova
  • CAA Seeding: 1. Fairfield, 2. Drexel, 3. Towson, 4. UMass
  • NEC Seeding: 1. Saint Joseph’s 2. Hobart, 3. Bryant, 4. Mount St. Mary’s

If you love college lacrosse, than you love the ACC Tournament. By the end of Friday night, the top two seeds, Notre Dame and North Carolina, had been knocked out of the ACCT. The Championship game featured Duke vs. Syracuse, two teams that have faced off four times over the last two years. The Title game was another classic ACC game. Duke got off to a 5-1 start. It was so bad that the thought of replacing Bobby Wardwell in net for the second time in the last four games was a real possibility. The Orange recovered, however, and had a huge second quarter in which SU outscored Duke 7-1. Kevin Rice led the offense with seven points, joining the 200 point club at Syracuse. Defensively, Syracuse had some issues, and that is putting it lightly. Missed slides, untimely slides, bad positioning, ball watching, and a complete lack of communication all made an appearance for the SU defense on Sunday. Leland Rogers, the SU Defensive Coordinator, has some significant work to do.

I think Syracuse takes the #1 seed; they’ve earned it. The dark horse to get it is Notre Dame, but I think the ACC crown will be enough for the Orange. Nevertheless, I am giving all top four seeds to ACC teams. Right now I have Syracuse, Notre Dame, UNC, Duke.

In addition, I still have Ohio State in the Tournament, even with the loss to Rutgers this weekend. Georgetown misses by a small margin, part of its problem is the teams that should have been good RPI wins turned out to be soft this year. Finally, I have Princeton as the only team that will play in the Ivy Tournament to miss the NCAA Tournament.


  1. Syracuse – Take down UNC and Duke in one weekend and win the ACC Championship, then you move up to the #1 spot. Offensively Syracuse woke up against Duke, but defensively this team looked horrendous. Poor communications and bad slides nearly sunk the Orange. SU has a warm up game against Colgate on Saturday before it hits the NCAAs.
  2. Notre Dame – If you told me five weeks ago that Notre Dame would lose to Duke by five goals, I would have laughed. The Irish did not play well, granted, but this team also ran into a hot Duke team. Shane Doss was pulled from the game in favor of Conor Kelly. Doss is solid, and should be back in net this week against Army.
  3. North Carolina – For the first time this year, Syracuse was held to under 12 goals scored. The UNC defense played great, but Nicky Galasso put up a hat trick against his former team as the Heels fell 8-9 to the Orange. UNC finishes the year at 12-3.
  4. Duke – Definitely not the same team that got smoked at Syracuse during the regular season. The defense has come together nicely, and the change in goal to Danny Fowler is working out. At the faceoff X, Kyle Rowe had a day against Ben Williams. I know these guys lost to Syracuse, but they may be the hottest team heading into post-season play. Boston University is up this week to close out the regular season.
  5. Denver – DU picked up an 18-11 win over Marquette on Saturday. Denver has the fifth highest RPI, and I think this team could get the fourth or fifth seed in the Tournament. The Pioneers will play Villanova in the Big East Semifinals.
  6. Maryland – Didn’t see this team falling to Hopkins. Maryland will be a seeded team in the NCAA Tourney, but will have to go through the B10 Tournament first where it will be the second seed and face Ohio State in the semifinals. It took overtime for the Terps to beat OSU last week.
  7. Virginia – UVA finished out its season with a 12-6 win in the ACC-Penn Classic on Saturday. I can see this team losing in the first round of the national tournament, it really depends on the matchup.
  8. Albany – This team has scored 20-plus points seven times this year, including this past week against Siena and then again against UMBC. It’s a real toss up as to whether the Great Danes can pull in that 8th seed or not. Albany will play Hartford for the first round of the America East Tournament.
  9. Brown – Brown has been a surprise team for me this year. They finish out the regular season at 12-3 and will be the top seed in the Ivy League Tournament and host Yale. I have Brown in the NCAA Tournament, but their seeding will depend on how this tournament goes.
  10. Cornell – The Big Red bounced back this weekend with a win over Princeton. Brown, Princeton and Cornell all hold a piece of the Ivy League regular season title. Cornell will play Princeton once again in the Ivy semifinals.
  11. Johns Hopkins – Eric Schneider made just three saves through 35:17 while giving up nine goals to Maryland. Will Ryan came in and played well, giving up three goals and making four saves. I know the timing is not optimal, but this may be the time to get a new starter in there. The win over the Terps was huge, Hop will get the first seed in the B10 Tourney and will play Penn State in its semifinals game.
  12. Princeton – The Tigers fell to Cornell 10-15 but will get another crack at the Big Red this weekend in the Ivy Tournament. If Princeton loses back-to-back to Cornell, I’m not sure there’s an invite to the Tournament waiting for them next Sunday.
  13. Georgetown – The Hoyas finished up the regular season with a 13-10 win over St. John’s. Georgetown will play Marquette in the Big East semis. G-Town is a bubble team so every win helps.
  14. Ohio State – The Buckeyes lost to Rutgers in a horrid performance. Hopkins beating Maryland hurt OSU because now the Buckeyes will play UMD instead of Hopkins in the semifinals.
  15. Yale – I really struggled with where to place the Bulldogs. Yale fell to Harvard last week, 8-9; that’s two straight losses. Yale will play at Brown in the Ivy semifinals, but the way they’ve finished out the year I have to give the edge to Brown. I think Yale, a team that two weeks ago I had seeded, is facing the very real possibility of missing the NCAA Tournament.
  16. Colgate – The ‘Gate put down Army in the Patriot League Championship and have earned the league’s automatic qualifier. The Raiders will host Syracuse on Saturday for the regular season finale; it’s a big measuring stick for this team.
  17. Marquette – Win the Big East or face the strong possibility of missing the tournament. The Golden Eagles fell to Denver last week and sit at 10-5 overall. I think it’s possible that Marquette can take down Georgetown and lose to Denver in the BE Tourney and still make the NCAA Tourney, but things have to go down perfectly.
  18. Stony Brook – While I’m not sure that the Seawolves have the firepower to beat Albany, this team should certainly destroy Vermont in the America East semis.
  19. Army – The Black Knights are 10-6 and recently lost to Colgate in the Patriot League Championship. Army has a potential game changer against Notre Dame this week. It is not out of the question that Army can beat the Irish but Notre Dame may be after some blood following that loss to Duke in the ACC semifinals.
  20. Marist – I expect the 11-3 Red Foxes to pick up the MAAC AQ. They are the #1 seed in the MAAC Tournament and will face Monmouth in the first round.