TopOfTheCircle.com

Serving the scholastic field hockey and lacrosse community since 1998

May 2, 2019 — The ball is up

Sometime around 11 a.m. today in Emmitsburg, Md. and Stony Brook, N.Y., groups of lacrosse players will await an umpire pushing a yellow sphere in between a pair of lacrosse sticks on each pitch, back away a few steps, and blow a whistle.

With that, a carnival of color, sinew, and action will ensue as the last 11 conferences which have not yet declared a champion will get underway.

Sixteen semifinal matches are being played today, with six more tomorrow.

For most of the competitors, the imperative is simple. Win and you’re in, but lose and go home.

It’s not that simple for a couple of the teams which are on the proverbial bubble. If there are three to watch out for, here’s a not-so-well-curated list:

  1. Stony Brook is a favorite to win the America East, but if they don’t win the AQ, the Seawolves may not have a backdoor into the dance as an at-large.
  2. Penn State is a good program with great coaching, but the Nittany Lions will be mathematically ineligible if they lose to Maryland tomorrow afternoon, since they will be 8-9 on the season.
  3. Cornell is being seen as a possible third bid out of the Ivy League, but they would have to beat Princeton tomorrow in the Ivy League Tournament in order to jumble up the Ratings Percentage Index in their favor (that is, beat Princeton and make Princeton’s opponents suffer because of the formula).

Have at it; it should be a fun weekend.

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