Originally, I wanted this NCAA Lacrosse tournament piece to be a preview. But, I realized that there was bound to be upsets and excitement that I want to be able to tell you loyal readers all about.
The Division I tournament is in full swing (they’ve actually already played the first two rounds). Here’s a recap of what happened so far:
#1 Virginia 18, Mount St. Mary’s 4
#8 Stony Brook 8, Denver 7
#5 Duke 18, Johns Hopkins 5
#4 North Carolina 14, Delaware 13
#3 Maryland 11, Hofstra 8
Notre Dame 8, #6 Princeton 5
#7 Cornell 11, Loyola 10
Army 9, #2 Syracuse 8
There was a few upsets as well as a few surprise blow outs in round one. Notre Dame dispatched IVY League Champion Princeton (I covered the IVY League championship for Inside Lacrosse) quite easily, but the biggest upset is also one of the least likely wins in tournament history. Syracuse, the two-time defending champions and a team that only lost a one goal game to #1 Virginia, lost in overtime to Army. Syracuse doesn’t lose in the first round. They were 22-1 at the carrier dome prior to this game. Stony Brook’s defeat of Denver probably falls under the category of an upset as well just due to the high level of play that Denver had been engaging in during the last month of the season. Virginia easily dismantled Mount St. Mary’s. This team, playing with a lot of fire and emotion after the past few week’s events, didn’t let the Mount get remotely comfortable in front of a packed house in Charlottesville. Duke’s demolition of Johns Hopkins was a sad sing that the Blue Jays are no longer near the elite programs in the country and didn’t even deserve to be in the tournament.
#1 Virginia 10, #8 Stony Brook 9
#5 Duke 17, #4 North Carolina 9
Notre Dame 7, #3 Maryland 5
#7 Cornell 14, Army 5
The second round didn’t have as many surprises as the first. The only reason surprises being how easily Duke beat bitter rival North Carolina and Notre Dame’s upset of Maryland. The closeness of the Virginia/Stony Brook score would seem strange if it wasn’t for the fact that Stony Brook is a solid team and they were the only team playing in front of their home crowd.
The final four is all set. Cornell will take on Notre Dame and Virginia will take on Duke. Both of those are terrific match ups. I’m still going to attempt to predict how this will all turn out.
I’m picking Notre Dame’s Cinderella run to end in a close game against Cornell. I covered Cornell for Inside Lacrosse for several games this season and they are a young, talented team. They seem to have shaken their stigma for giving up big leads in last weekends shellacking of Army.
Cornell 12, Notre Dame 9
This game is probably going to make me look foolish. Many experts believe that this game is the real national championship since these two teams are both more talented than the other two. Virginia is a team playing with emotion and fire and the #1 seed. Duke has been dominant in the tournament, with neither win remotely close. I think Virginia gets the edge because of what they are playing for.
Virginia 15, Duke 12
Check out the games this saturday on ESPN2 and the championship on monday afternoon on ESPN2 as well. Also, follow we on twitter: twitter.com/chrisosburn
30 year old freelance writer and The Father Life‘s resident beer columnist and sports editor. He also writes about fine beverages for drinkingmadeeasy.com and Chilled Magazine. On top of that, he writes about college and professional lacrosse for insidelacrosse.com. He’s also written for Genesee Valley Parenting Magazine, the Democrat and Chronicle Newspaper and ESPN.com. “Osburn on Tap” appears monthly in THE FATHER LIFE. For questions, comments, or if you have a story idea for Chris, throw him an email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, follow him on twitter http://www.twitter.com/chrisosburn