10 D-III Lacrosse Teams to Watch in 2023

Jane Earley has won two national championships with Middlebury College. (PHOTO Courtesy: Will Costello)

By Matt Noonan

It’s been a few days – OK, a little over a week since the NCAA Division III college lacrosse season concluded, but before we officially say farewell to the 2022 season, I thought I would share a ten teams – five men and five women’s squads – that I believe could contend for a national championship next May.

Men’s D-III Lacrosse Teams to Watch in 2023

Bowdoin College: The Polar Bears were a team to watch this spring — hey, I thought they were the team that was going to win the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) crown last month. Despite ending their season in the quarterfinals against RIT, Bowdoin is certainly a squad to keep an eye on next spring. Coach Bill Mason will welcome back some key members of this year’s team, including Will Byrne (68 goals, 33 assists), Patrick Fitzgerald (53 goals, 16 assists), and Ethan Barnard (342 face-off wins) that will certainly help Bowdoin contend for both a conference and national title.

RIT: Coach Jake Coon and the 2022 Tigers joined an elite group of teams that captured back-to-back titles in NCAA D-III lacrosse history, but could they really contend for a third consecutive crown next spring? I believe they can, despite losing some talented upperclassmen, but if the Tigers are able to win their third-straight title, they would become the first team since Salisbury University to capture three-straight championships (Salisbury won three consecutive NCAA titles in 2003, 2004, and 2005).

Tufts University: The Jumbos’ run toward a national championship was quite exciting with the Powder Blue and Brown scoring two impressive postseason wins against St. John Fisher College and Salisbury. Tufts’ season concluded in the semifinals with a 26-15 setback to RIT. Like Bowdoin, Tufts will return some key pieces from its 19-win squad next spring that will certainly be players to watch, including Jack Boyden and Tommy Swank.

Union College: The Dutchmen’s run toward its first-ever national championship was exciting — can I say entertaining, as well? Union should be in the mix again next spring, despite graduating some key members of its 2022 squad. Dan Donahue will return between the pipes next season after an impressive second year with the squad that saw the Weston, Massachusetts native record a career-best 240 stops and 17 wins.

York College: Despite ending its season in the national semifinals, the Spartans run toward a championship was highlighted by two postseason victories over Christopher Newport and Southern Virginia. They will lose some key veterans that were either graduate students or seniors this spring, but will welcome back Ben Mayer, a first-year attack from Palm Harbor, Florida that led the Green and White with 90 points on 58 goals and 32 assists.

Others to watch: Albion College, Amherst College, Christopher Newport, Denison University, Dickinson College, Gettysburg College, RPI, Salisbury University, St. John Fisher, Wesleyan University, and Western New England

Women’s D-III Lacrosse Teams to Watch in 2023

Middlebury College: After being idle for a year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Panthers continued their previous momentum from 2019 and their first three matchups in 2020 by winning 22 of 23 contests this spring, including the national title game. Jane Earley guided Middlebury to its second title in three years, as well as its eighth in program history. Earley, who established new single-season records for goals (80) and points (99), will be one of many players to watch next year.

Salisbury University: Despite ending their 2022 campaign without some hardware, the Sea Gulls were once again a team to watch after finishing the 2021 season as national champions. Coach Jim Nestor will welcome back some key pieces from its 2021 and 2022 squads, including Erin Scannell, who led Salisbury with 55 goals, which should help Salisbury be in the mix for its fifth crown in program history.

The College of New Jersey (TCNJ): After scoring two impressive postseason wins over Salisbury University and SUNY Cortland last month, the Lions’ momentum vanished in the national semifinals with an 18-7 setback to Tufts. The loss, however, could help the Lions understand what they must do to contend for the program’s 14th national championship. TCNJ has not won a national championship since 2006.

Tufts University: For the second-straight season, coach Courtney Shute‘s Jumbos fell short of winning the program’s initial title. But perhaps this year’s defeat to Middlebury will be the inspiration to win the crown in 2023? Like every team, the Jumbos will graduate some key pieces from this year’s squad, including goalie Molly Laliberty and midfielder Anna Clarke.

Washington and Lee: The Generals ended their season by matching their program record for wins with 19. Washington and Lee saw its bid toward a national title conclude in the quarterfinals against Gettysburg College, but the loss will certainly fuel the Blue and White next season, which returns some impressive talent that has guided the unit to 33 wins in its last 37 contests.

Others to watch: Capital University, Colby College, Franklin & Marshall, Gettysburg College, Ithaca College, Kenyon College, Pomona-Pitzer, Rhodes College, Roanoke College, SUNY Cortland, SUNY SUNY Geneseo, University of Chicago, Wesleyan University, and William Smith

Noontime’s D3 Lacrosse Weekend Watch (March 18-20)

Caleb Holdridge and the Coast Guard Academy men’s lacrosse team have won three-straight contests. (PHOTO COURTESY: Brad Clift/CGA Athletics)

By Matt Noonan

Happy Friday, everyone – if you’re in Massachusetts (or some part of New England), hopefully, you’re taking advantage of the gorgeous spring weather today.

While March Madness might be the focus of many, both today and this weekend, I do want to share (and highlight) a few New England NCAA Division III lacrosse games to follow this weekend, beginning with an important conference meeting in Babson Park.

Babson College will host Coast Guard Academy on Saturday with the two teams meeting for the first time since last season’s New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) Tournament final (the Beavers beat the Bears to secure their first-ever conference tournament crown).

The Beavers enter Saturday’s meeting with some momentum from last week’s overtime win against Endicott CollegeLee Sipes scored the game-winner while finishing the non-league tilt with two goals and one assist to go with one ground ball.

Prior to their exciting win against the Gulls, Babson won two of three contests, including a season-opening win against Roger Williams University.  

Coast Guard Academy has rebounded from an 0-2 start, winning three-straight non-league tilts this month, including an 18-7 victory on Wednesday against Maritime College (N.Y.). Caleb Holdridge, a junior attack from Waterford, Connecticut, highlighted his team’s win over the Privateers with four goals and four assists to go with one ground ball and one caused turnover.  

Holdridge has been a player to watch on the Bears this season, tallying 28 points on 11 goals and 17 helpers in five contests.

Babson is 4-2 all-time against Coast Guard with the series between the two programs beginning in 2015. They have won one of two meetings with the Bears at MacDowell Field.

If the Beavers are going to be victorious, they will need to win most of the face-offs and scoop more ground balls. So far this season, the Green and White are 2-0 when they win both categories.

Another NEWMAC game to watch tomorrow features Wheaton College, the team that currently sits atop the league standings with a 7-0 record. The Lyons will visit Springfield College, which has won one of four meetings thus far – they recently lost a heartbreaker to Endicott on Tuesday in overtime.

Saturday’s meeting between the Lyons and Pride will be a good test for coach Kyle Hart’s squad, which has edged its last two opponents by one goal.

While Wheaton has been an exciting story this spring, the same could be said for Emerson College, a team that has won seven of eight contests this season. The Lions will host Eastern Connecticut State tomorrow with a face-off scheduled for 1 p.m.

Finally, don’t overlook MIT – the Engineers have won all five of its early-season contests and will attempt to claim its first league win tomorrow when they welcome Clark University to Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Ryan Gebhardt has been the player to watch on MIT this spring as the graduate student has scored 30 goals in five contests while tallying 10 assists. He currently leads the conference in goals but is second in points behind Emerson’s Birk Swan, who has produced 43 points on 19 goals and 24 helpers.  

A few other men’s lacrosse games to watch this weekend:

Williams College at Bowdoin College on Saturday at 1 p.m.: The Polar Bears have won four-straight contests, including two New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) meetings. They will look to win their fifth game against an Ephs squad that lost to Union College last Thursday.  

Wesleyan University at Colby College on Saturday at 1 p.m.: The Cardinals have produced 22 goals or more in all four contests this season. Can they continue their early-season momentum against a Mules squad that is seeking its first conference win? We’ll have to wait and see.

Curry College at Western Connecticut on Sunday at 2 p.m.: The Continentals saw their four-game winning streak snapped on Wednesday against The College of Wooster. Keep an eye on Kai Bruneau, the first-year attack from West Haven, Connecticut, who could help the home team return to the win column on Sunday.    

D3 Lax Notebook: Make It 22-Straight Wins for Salisbury University

Salisbury University women’s lacrosse has now won 22-straight contests, dating back to their first win of the 2021 season last February. (PHOTO COURTESY: Joey Gardner, FotoJoe Photography)

By Matt Noonan

Another busy Saturday of NCAA Division III lacrosse is in the books.

Salisbury University women’s lacrosse cruised to its 22nd straight win against Catholic University, thanks to Erin Scannell, who registered her second hat trick of the season to go with one ground ball. Meredith Price also recorded three goals against the Cardinals while Mary Claire Hisle registered eight saves on 12 shots.

As a team, Salisbury scooped 23 ground balls and completed 22 of 28 clear attempts while tallying 30 shots, including 21 shots on goal.

Grace Hill highlighted Catholic’s effort with two points on one goal and one assist.

Salisbury, which has not lost a game in two years, will look to continue its early-season momentum on Saturday, February 26 when they welcome Washington and Lee to Sea Gull Stadium for a 12 p.m. opening draw.

Speaking of Washington and Lee, the Generals commenced their 2022 campaign with an exciting one-goal win over Franklin & Marshall.

Allie Schwab scored the game-winner with 11.9 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter to clinch the Generals’ first win against the Diplomats since February 23, 2019.

Hanna Bishop concluded the contest with a team-high four points on three goals and one assist while Katherine Faria added two goals and one helper.

Faria provided the Generals with an early lead, which they did not relinquish, despite the Diplomats pulling within one goal seven times. Washington and Lee finished the game with 31 shots, including 21 on net compared to Franklin & Marshall, which tallied 25 shots.

Franklin & Marshall’s Marissa McGarrey led all players with four goals on eight shots to go with three draw controls. All four of McGarrey’s tallies came on free-position attempts.

Coach Peter Toner earned his initial win with Gettysburg College men’s lacrosse on Saturday as the Bullets defeated Eastern University, 16-4.

Gettysburg, which has beaten Eastern nine times, was led by Kieran Ward (three goals, one assist, and five ground balls) and George Raymond (one goal and four assists).

Saturday’s win marked the first time Toner guided a Division III squad to a regular-season victory since 2008 when Wheaton College beat Babson College, 11-7.  

Other highlights from the third busy Saturday of the 2022 college lacrosse season:

Noontime’s D3 Lacrosse Games to Watch (Feb. 17-18)

Kate Olsen and the Catholic University women’s lacrosse team will begin their 2022 campaign on Saturday against Salisbury University. (PHOTO COURTESY: Will Stumme)

By NoontimeSports.com

Another busy weekend of lacrosse has arrived — are you ready?

We are, especially with more teams competing for the first (or second) time this season.

Every Friday, we will be highlighting a few games to watch in NCAA Division III, beginning with a possible postseason preview between Catholic University and Salisbury University.


FEATURED GAME: Salisbury University at Catholic University: Saturday, February 19 at 1 p.m. (Women’s Lacrosse): The Sea Gulls head to Washington D.C. with hopes of extending their 21-game winning streak, which dates to their initial win of the 2021 season.

Last weekend, Salisbury began its title defense with a 15-5 win over Stevenson University, thanks to Erin Scannell and Delaney Hill, who combined for six goals and one assist. Mary Claire Hisle concluded the contest with seven saves and was named the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) Division III Defensive Player of the Week.

Catholic will compete for the first time since since their second-round postseason matchup last May with St. John Fisher, which saw an impressive 10-game winning streak snapped.

Prior to an early exit in the national playoffs, the Cardinals captured their seventh-straight Landmark Conference crown before beating Becker College in the opening round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament.

Kate Olsen returns for her junior season after leading the Cardinals with 33 goals to go with nine assists, 10 ground balls, and seven caused turnovers. She will be joined on the offensive end by Caroline Beckett (attack) and Clare Richards (midfield).


Whittier College at Rhodes College: Friday, February 18 at 8 p.m. (Men’s Lacrosse): After dropping a pair of non-conference games last weekend, the Lynx will look to score their first win of the 2022 season against a Poets squad that is returning to the field for the first time in two years. Drew Downes (four goals) and Jonathon Hazlehurst (two goals and two assists) will be two players to watch on Rhodes this evening.

Washington and Lee at Franklin & Marshall: Saturday, February 19 at 12 p.m. (Women’s Lacrosse): A pair of Top 10 teams will square off in Lancaster, Pennsylvania on Saturday in what could be a potential postseason preview. Allie Schwab returns for her junior season with the Generals after leading the Blue and White in points (69) last season while placing third in goals (35). Mary Pat McKenna, who was the Centennial Conference (CC) Defensive Player of the Year last season, will be one of many players to watch on the Diplomats this spring.  

Eastern University at Gettysburg College: Saturday, February 19 at 1 p.m. (Men’s Lacrosse): A new chapter of Gettysburg lacrosse begins this weekend with coach Peter Toner leading the Bullets into their initial contest of the 2022 season against an Eagles squad that has lost its last eight meetings with the Blue and Orange. Toner, who spent the last 11 seasons with Penn State, played lacrosse at Springfield College and coached two seasons at Wheaton College (Mass.).  

Babson College at Roger Williams University: Saturday, February 19 at 1 p.m. (Men’s Lacrosse): The Beavers were picked to win the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) and will certainly be a team to watch this spring. Babson beat Roger Williams in its season-opener two years ago by a score of 13-1, thanks to Owen Allen, who tallied six points on four goals and two assists.

The University of Redlands at George Fox: Saturday, February 19 at 8 p.m. (Women’s Lacrosse): Picked to win the Northwest Conference (NWC), the Bruins will look to commence their season with their first-ever win against a Bulldogs squad that has defeated the Navy Blue and White twice. George Fox returns 11 of 12 starters from last year’s squad, including Carleigh DeLapp, who led the squad in goals (58) while placing third in points (61).  

What We Learned From The Second Week of the 2022 NCAA D3 Lacrosse Season

Brett Gladstone recorded nine points in his team’s non-conference clash with Colorado College. (PHOTO COURTESY: Hunter Martin)

By NoontimeSports.com

The first two weeks of the 2022 NCAA Division III lacrosse season are in the books.

Perhaps most exciting story of the young season is the Grove City College men’s lacrosse team, which scored a pair of impressive wins this past weekend against Colorado College and Rhodes College.

Both wins were highlighted by an offense led by Brett Gladstone, who tallied 13 points on eight goals and five assists on 23 shots, including 15 shots on goal.

Zachary Hougan added 11 points on eight goals and three assists while Grant Evans won 28 of 41 face-offs.

Saturday’s opening day win against the Lynx was certainly impressive, but perhaps the Red and White’s best showing of the weekend came one day later with an eight-goal win against a Tigers squad that advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals last May.

Gladstone highlighted the Wolverines’ win against Colorado College with nine points on seven goals and two assists while goalie Jack Petit recorded nine saves.

The Wolverines led the Tigers, 13-6, at the break before tacking on nine more goals during the final 30 minutes, including six in the final session.

Grove City entered the 2022 season with high expectations after winning 35 of 51 contests over the last four seasons, including two Presidents’ Athletic Conference (PAC) titles. The Wolverines have competed in the NCAA postseason twice, but have yet to record their first tournament win in program history (Grove City has lost back-to-back opening-round games to Cabrini University and SUNY Maritime).

Following an impressive start to the 2022 season, coach Alec Jernstedt tweeted the following: “This weekend was big for the story of our program and our guys. They’ve had an unrelenting belief and work ethic for (five) seasons now and got their first win over a ranked opponent. I know (it’s) just the start and I can’t wait to see what they do next. Love this team.”

The Wolverines will be idle this week but will return to action next Saturday, February 26 when they visit Baldwin Wallace University.

Salisbury women’s lacrosse extends its winning streak

Make it 21-straight victories for the Salisbury University women’s lacrosse team, which scored an opening day victory over Stevenson University on Saturday.

Salisbury, which won the NCAA Division III championship last May, has not lost a game since falling to Gettysburg College on March 11, 2020.

Erin Scannell and Delaney Hill each recorded hat tricks in the win while Mary Claire Hisle turned aside seven of 12 shots in the Sea Gulls’ ten goals (15-5) victory over the Mustangs.

Caroline Murphy led Stevenson with four goals on eight shots to go with one caused turnover.

As a team, the Sea Gulls registered 10 ground balls, completed 18 of 19 clears, and fired 38 shots.

Salisbury will visit Catholic University on Saturday, February 19. Like the Sea Gulls, the Cardinals secured a spot on 2022 Inside Lacrosse/Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) preseason poll after concluding its 2021 season with a 10-1 record.

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