The more things change, the more things stay the same. As Virginia continues to blister the college lacrosse landscape, the Cavaliers' grip on the top spot in both the Inside Lacrosse Media Poll and the USILA STX Coaches Poll becomes tighter and tighter.
Inside Lacrosse Media Poll
The top three in the Media Poll stayed the same this week, but mild chaos ensued from the four slot down. As the press release notes:
Virginia is still undefeated, and thus, still on top of this week's Inside Lacrosse media poll. Georgetown and Hofstra remained at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively, but Cornell and Navy bumped up to fourth and fifth, respectively.1. Virginia (23)
The top ten are rounded out by Hopkins, Maryland, Princeton, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts, respectively.
After an absence from the poll Loyola returned, this week at No. 20. Albany dropped out of the rankings.
6. (Hate) Johns Hopkins
11. Notre Dame
14. Penn State
This poll has made me scratch my head all season. Syracuse was not punished last week despite having an abysmal 2-4 record and losing to upstate neighbor Hobart at home.
This week, the Orange punishes then number five Princeton and moves up a whopping three positions.
In short, there has yet to form a consensus on Syracuse within this poll. It appears as if some people are giving the Orange the benefit of the doubt while others are harshly punishing Syracuse for playing a difficult schedule. That, frankly, is concerning.
USILA STX Coaches Poll
The Coaches Poll, similar to the media poll, solidified its top three this week as Virginia once again secured the pole position with Hofstra and Georgetown following reasonably close behind. The rest of the poll looks as follows:
1. Virginia (10)
8. (Hate) Johns Hopkins
9. Notre Dame
14. Penn State
Pointless NCAA Tournament Speculation
Back for its second week of sure to fail prognostication is my futile attempt to read the selection committee's mind. Utilizing the multi-step selection criteria devised for this endeavor, I've come up with what appears below.
America East Conference: University of Maryland-Baltimore County
Colonial Athletic Conference: Hofstra
Great Western Lacrosse League: Notre Dame
Ivy Group: Pennsylvania
Metro-Atlantic Athletic Conference: Providence
Patriot League: Navy
America East Conference: None
Atlantic Coast Conference: Maryland; Virginia
Colonial Athletic Conference: Towson
Eastern Colleges Athletic Conference: Georgetown; UMass
Great Western Lacrosse League: None
Independents: Johns Hopkins; Syracuse
Ivy Group: Cornell; Harvard; Princeton
Metro-Atlantic Athletic Conference: Get Fucking Real, Douchebag
Patriot League: None
This, of course, is all subject to change. And is pathetically pointless.
There is nothing sweeter than watching Bill Tierney lose a lacrosse game. He is to me what Samuel L. Jackson was to Bruce Willis in Unbreakable. As a consequence, I am still reveling in Syracuse's demolition of the Tiger defense.
Remember all that stuff I mentioned last week about Syracuse showing no improvement over the course of this season? Well, there's a good chance that was all a lie. Syracuse had its stuff together on Saturday (thanks in large part to Peter Coluccini's 19-save performance), and the numbers bear this out:
|Victory Factors: v. Princeton|
Poss. = Possessions
Sht% = Shooting percentage
Sht/Poss = Shots per possession
G/Poss = Goals per possession
So, while the offense may have performed under its efficiency average this season (which should have been expected given Princeton's ferocious defense), the Orange defense stifled the Tiger attack. That is very encouraging.
All in all, an acceptable result for the Orange. The big question is, however, whether Syracuse will be able to translate this recent success into a "w" down at Ithaca tomorrow night.