By Chris Goldberg
Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/9/09
The Inter-Ac League, which will not be participating in the Pennsylvania state playoffs for the first time, has announced it will hold its first post-season tournament.
Haverford School coach John Nostrant said the Inter-Ac, considered by many lacrosse followers to be one of the strongest leagues in the region, will hold a playoff championship game on Friday May 15 at Cabrini College’s lighted field.
The Inter-Ac is not a member of the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA), which this year is sanctioning boys’ lacrosse for the first time. The league tourney was developed to give the Inter-Ac players a post-season experience and more exposure, Nostrant said.
“It gives them another chance to play another week,” said Nostrant. “We figure college coaches (will be interested). And we planned it around the PIAA playoffs, so we can watch their playoffs and they can watch ours.”
Nostrant said the tournament champion will be separate from the actual league champion, which will be determined by the regular-season games. This year there will be only five teams in the league because Chestnut Hill Academy has dropped out to become an independent.
The five remaining teams – Haverford School, Malvern Prep, Episcopal Academy, Penn Charter and Germantown Academy – have won 17 of the 41 state championships. Each has won at least once.
The league will be highly competitive again this year. Haverford School is ranked 13th in the Under Armour/Inside Lacrosse Power Rankings heading into Saturday’s battle at Maryland power St. Paul’s. Already, 16 Inter-Ac seniors have signed with Division I schools and six juniors have verbally committed to Division I schools.
Malvern Prep finished 11th in last year’s final National Coaches/Computer ratings by LaxPower; Haverford School was 43rd.
Nostrant said the Inter-Ac’s No. 4 and No. 5 seeds will meet at the higher seeded school on May 11 in a preliminary game. The semifinals will be May 13 at Cabrini. Also, proceeds from the tournament will go to an undetermined charity.
Originally, Nostrant had hoped to develop a Mid-Atlantic Region postseason tournament for the top private school teams in the East. He still hopes one day that can be achieved.
“We tried to get some other teams,” he said. “But now we’ll start small, and hopefully this will grow into something.”