New England D3 Lax: Tufts, Salisbury Set To Meet In NCAA D3 Championship

By Matt Noonan 

When the final horn sounded in Salisbury, Maryland, the Sea Gulls rushed the field to celebrate their 14-6 win over Gettysburg College in the NCAA Division III men’s lacrosse semifinals.

With a 23-12 semifinal victory over St. Lawrence, Tufts advanced to Sunday's national title against Salisbury. (Photo Credit: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

With a 23-12 semifinal victory over St. Lawrence, Tufts advanced to Sunday’s national title against Salisbury. (Photo Credit: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.comse semifinals.

The win provided the Sea Gulls with their second trip in three seasons to the championship game where they’ll face Tufts University, which defeated St. Lawrence University, 23-12.

Both teams have met in the title round before with Tufts winning two of three meetings.

The Jumbos defeated Jim Berkman’s squad, 9-6, in the 2010 championship game, which provided Tufts with its initial title in program history.

One year later, the Sea Gulls rolled past the Jumbos, defeating Tufts by a score of 19-7 en route to the program’s ninth national crown. Salisbury would defeat SUNY Cortland the following year – the 2012 championship game was played at Gillette Stadium – to earn their 10th national title in program history before falling to Tufts two years later in the 2014 championship.

Tufts captured the 2015 Division III crown, thanks to a 6-2 run in the third quarter that helped the Powder Blue, White and Brown roll past Lynchburg, 19-11.

A win for the Jumbos would be their third-straight national crown. No Division III squad has won a trio of national titles in a row since Berkman guided Salisbury to three-straight championship victories in 2003, 2004 and 2005.

“We are very fortunate and very excited to be heading to the championship,” Berkman said in yesterday’s press release. “I am proud of all 50 guys for enduring what is a long season and putting us in position to hopefully win our 11th national championship.”

Face-off is scheduled for 1:00 p.m. on Sunday with the game being played at Lincoln-Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

New England D3Lax Notebook: Tufts’ Uppgren Makes History In 19-6 Win Over SUNY Cortland

Tufts senior John Uppgren became the third NCAA Division III lacrosse player to reach 400 career points. (Photo Credit: Lacrosse Magazine)

Tufts senior John Uppgren became the third NCAA Division III lacrosse player to reach 400 career points. (Photo Credit: Lacrosse Magazine)

By Matt Noonan 

Last Saturday was a historical day for Tufts senior John Uppgren, who became the third NCAA Division III men’s lacrosse player to record 400 career points.

Uppgren registered nine points on five goals and four assists as the Jumbos defeated SUNY Cortland, 19-6, in the second round of the NCAA Division III Tournament.

The senior attacker reached the 400-point mark when he located Zach Richman for a fourth quarter tally, which was part of a 14-1 run.

Prior to reaching 400 career points, Uppgren eclipsed the 100-point mark for the third consecutive season. He currently has 113 points on 60 goals and 53 assists.

The Jumbos will continue their march to Philadelphia when they host top-ranked Ithaca on Wednesday at Bello Field. The Bombers entered the tournament as the top team in the land, but the Jumbos received a higher seed before their initial postseason contests against Emmanuel.

Tufts or Ithaca will be the site of Sunday’s semifinal against the winner of Amherst-St. Lawrence.

New England D3 Lax Notebook: Triple-Overtime Win Provides Confidence Boost For Springfield

By Matt Noonan 

Dylan Sheehan's triple-overtime game-winning gaol helped Springfield defeat Middlebury, 11-10 (3OT) in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. (Photo Credit: Springfield College)

Dylan Sheehan’s triple-overtime game-winning gaol helped Springfield defeat Middlebury, 11-10 (3OT) in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. (Photo Credit: Springfield College)By Matt Noonan 

In the words of Springfield College men’s lacrosse head coach Keith Bugbee, Wednesday’s NCAA Tournament triple-overtime win against Middlebury College was ‘one for the ages.’

Springfield and Middlebury traded goals during the final two sessions before ending regulation tied at 10-10.

The game continued in overtime, but neither team was able to locate the back of the net until the third extra session when Dylan Sheehan snapped a shot over the middle to provide the visiting Pride with a dramatic 11-10 triple-overtime win.

“The effort and the commitment to playing 60 minutes today was unbelievable,” Bugbee said in a postgame interview. “Just the desire to win this game … I don’t think I have ever been apart of something like this … unbelievable.”

The game was indeed one for the ages – not trying to steal Bugbee’s words, I promise – but now the Pride must channel their excitement by putting fourth their best effort tomorrow against St. Lawrence University in the second round.

Unlike the Pride, the Saints cruised to a first-round victory, defeating New England College, 25-2. Jeremy Vautour netted six goals, while Conor Healey recorded seven points on three goals and four assists.

Saturday’s second round winner will advance to next Wednesday’s quarterfinal against either Amherst or RIT.

With an exciting first-round victory in the rearview mirror, Bugbee believes his team’s morale should help the squad keep their championship hopes alive as they begin the next phase of their NCAA Tournament journey.

“I think the sky is the limit,” said Bugbee. “As long as they put this kind of effort out and this kind of commitment to do all the little things right and just compete for the entire 60 minutes of the game.”

NCAA D3 Lacrosse Tournament: Wednesday Video Streams (LINKS)

NCAA Logo

By NoontimeSports.com 

The NCAA Division III men’s lacrosse tournament begins today and six of the 16 games will feature New England squads.

The first New England team to compete will be Amherst – the Purple and White head to Troy, New York to face RPI, while Keene State will host Montclair State at 6 p.m.

Below are the games – they are linked to online streams. Remember to also check-in with us on Twitter (@NoontimeSports) for scores and updates.

Good luck to all teams competing today!

Wednesday, May 11: NCAA Division III Men’s Lacrosse, First Round 

Amherst at RPI, 3 p.m. 

New England College at St. Lawrence, 4 p.m.

Emmanuel at Tufts, 4 p.m. 

SUNY Cortland at Western New England, 4 p.m. 

Springfield at Middlebury, 4:30 p.m. 

Montclair State at Keene State, 6 p.m. 

New England D3 Lax Notebook: NCAA Tournament First Round Predictions

Jarred Sausville and the New England College men's lacrosse team begin NCAA Tournament play on Wednesday against St. Lawrence. (Photo Credit: New England College Athletics)

Jarred Sausville and the New England College men’s lacrosse team begin NCAA Tournament play on Wednesday against St. Lawrence. (Photo Credit: New England College Athletics)

By Matt Noonan 

Ah, the NCAA Division III Lacrosse Tournament has returned – in fact, it starts tomorrow, so why not dish out a few predictions?

Below are my picks for six games that feature New England teams – let me know if you agree, disagree or want to chat #d3lax on Twitter (@MattNoonan11).

RPI over Amherst: Defense wins championships, right? RPI has a defense that has limited opponents to roughly seven goals per game, so slowing down the Amherst attack will be key for an Engineers victory.

Middlebury over Springfield: The Panthers won the last meeting by defeating the Pride, 10-8. Middlebury also outshot Springfield, 52-21, including 18-2 in the second quarter, so expect the Blue and White attack to guide the Panthers to an early lead, as well as the unit’s 13th victory of the 2016 season.

New England College over St. Lawrence: How about an upset? New England College’s attack is averaging close to 16 goals per game and posted 17 goals or more in a pair of NAC tournament games. Can their offensive output continue against the Saints? Let’s find out!

Keene State over Montclair State: The Owls soared past Eastern Connecticut State in the Little East Conference championship, while the Red Hawks cruised to a Skyline Conference title by defeating Stockton, 13-6. Expect both attacks to highlight this particular contest with Keene’s offense managing to muster one (or two) additional goals.

Western New England over SUNY Cortland: Winners of 11 straight, including the CCC Championship, the Golden Bears enter the tournament on a roll. Can anyone slow down a unit that hasn’t lost since the end of March? Not sure, but I don’t think the Red Dragons will stop WNE’s pursuit of 12 straight wins.

Tufts over Emmanuel:Is this the year the Saints beat the Jumbos? Never say never, but Tufts is peaking at the right time. The Jumbos captured their seventh straight NESCAC crown on Sunday, while Emmanuel won its third-straight GNAC title. Emmanuel should keep pace with Tufts, however, the Powder and Blue will prevail.