Monday, May 04, 2009

NCAA Division III Lacrosse Question

I’m guessing that no one who reads this regularly follows NCAA Division 3 men’s lacrosse. However, can someone explain to me how Ithaca College failed to make the NCAA Tournament? Ithaca finished the season ranked #8 in the USILA Division III Men's Lacrosse Coaches' Poll with a 14-2 record (7-1 in away games) including an impressive 11-8 victory at #4 Cortland. Ithaca lost to Nazareth in the Empire 8 Tournament semifinals in overtime meaning that the Bombers could not earn an automatic bid. So that loss alone causes the team to be excluded from the tournament?

The Ithaca Journal wrote that "Ithaca got caught up in a cold numbers game. The Bombers were one of four of the USILA Division III coaches' poll's top-five teams to miss out on their conference's automatic berth. No. 1 Roanoke lost to No. 10 Washington & Lee in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference final; No. 2 Middlebury fell in the NESCAC semifinals to eventual champion, No. 17 Wesleyan; and No. 4 Stevenson lost last weekend to No. 5 Salisbury in the Capital Conference title game."

Please note that in the final poll, Roanoke finished at #3; Middlebury at #7; and Stevenson #1. Not only did these three teams earn NCAA berths, but they also received first-round byes. I call shenanigans! A few commenters at Inside Lacrosse also state that Ithaca got screwed.

Therefore, I demand a full explanation from the NCAA lacrosse selection committee! Where is Billy Packer to ask these tough questions to the committee chair?

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