by Jac Coyne | MCLA.us
LA CROSSE, Wis. – Others with longer tenures in the MCLA can confirm or dispute, but I’m wagering this is the best season the SELC has ever had.
Honestly, it’s probably the best “East Coast” season in MCLA history, as well, but let’s stick to the SELC in this case.
Eight ranked teams with three of them in the Top 10. That’s rarified air.
Considering there are only three other Division I conferences that have as many as eight teams – LSA, UMLC and WCLL – it’s pretty safe to say that no league has had eight teams in the poll since the WCLL-SLC split a decade ago.
I’m not here to rain on the SELC’s collective parade. The league should be quite proud of what it has accomplished this spring and use it as a springboard toward consistency.
I am here to point out one problem with having so many national-quality teams sequestered in one league: these power conferences tend to eat their figurative tails over time.
Take last night’s game between No. 16 Georgia and No. 20 Florida State. Both have decent postseason résumés and both are essentially locked into the SELC tournament out of their respective divisions.
UPSET ALERT: #20 Florida State 13, #16 Georgia 11. FINAL!
A post shared by FSU Men's Lacrosse (@fsumenslacrosse) on
But the nature of the beast is one team took a big step forward – the Seminoles in this case, who won 13-11 – and the other a step backward. It’s going to happen again this afternoon when No. 4 South Carolina faces No. 10 Virginia Tech.
This will continue all the way into the SELC tournament. As the schedule works out, the top two teams in each division – who all happen to be ranked – will be playing each other down the stretch. Some teams will further impress the selection committee while others fall of the charts.
The SELC teams should be by no means discouraged by this fact of life.
It’s far better to have all these ranked teams than the situation just a couple of years ago when only the automatic qualifier was heading to nationals.
Yes, there will be some quality, ranked programs staying home when the dust settles after the SELC tournament, but there could also be as many as three teams heading to Salt Lake City. And sporting some quality seeds, as well.
The real race is to make sure your program is among the three.
* * *
Your #12 Cougars improve to 10-0 with a 22-10 victory over Long Beach #AllCougEverything #CSUSM #MCLA
A post shared by CSUSM Men's Lacrosse (@csusmlax) on
Cougars Heading to Postseason
Cal State San Marcos’ undefeated season continued on Friday night as the Cougars rolled past Cal State Long Beach, 22-10.
More importantly, the win improves the Cougars to 3-0 in the SLC South, ensuring that San Marcos will be advancing to the SLC tournament as one of the three seeds coming out of the division.
A win over an upstart UC San Diego team on April 14 and CSUSM will be the top seed in the South, garnering a bye into the conference playoff semifinals.
Teddy Hicks’ squad needs to keep its eyes on the SLC AQ prize, however, because its best win is against No. 14 UC Davis. That might not be enough for an at-large at this point.
Today's the day. #BorderWar @MCLA @UMLClax pic.twitter.com/lUPkb6jhKj
— Mizzou Lacrosse (@MizzouLacrosse) April 7, 2018
Sooners Lock Up Top Seed
Oklahoma’s comfy, 22-4 victory over Arkansas on Friday night wraps up the top seed out of the LSA North for the Sooners.
Even with an unlikely loss to Texas Tech today, OU would win the head-to-head tiebreaker over the other potential 4-1 team (TCU or SMU).
Oklahoma will be entertaining Texas State in the first round of the LSA tournament at a day and time to be determined.
Join your Lakers as they take on @DaytonLax in Dayton, OH today at 2pm. #AnchorUp #LetsGoLakeShow #MCLA18 pic.twitter.com/euVASd9m8k
— GVSU Men's Lacrosse (@GVSULAX) April 7, 2018
NOTES: South Carolina managed a 10-7 victory over George Washington heading into today’s throwdown with Virginia Tech…Oregon picked up an important, 17-6 win over Idaho to remain in the PNCLL playoff hunt…Liberty held off a late Pitt charge to win the Sixth Annual Midnight Mayhem game, 15-12…there should be plenty of streamed games today. Check out the MCLA Twitter feed for those that are available.