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.@SJUHawks_MLAX picked to be first in NEC Preseason Poll

Wednesday, 8th February 2017

Categories Boy's/Men's, College, Rankings  
 

Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 2/8/17
From Press Release

With four first-place votes, the Saint Joseph’s men’s lacrosse team has been predicted to win the 2017 Northeast Conference title, as voted on by the league’s seven head coaches and announced on Tuesday afternoon. The Hawks won the regular-season title outright in 2014 and 2015 and shared it last spring.

2016 NEC Tournament champion Hobart (2) and Bryant (1), winner of four straight NEC Tournament titles from 2012-15, closed out the top three while Robert Morris, Mount St. Mary’s, Sacred Heart, and Wagner rounded out the seven-team poll.

The Hawks will kick off NEC action on Saturday, March 25 at Bryant, followed by Robert Morris (Apr. 1) and Hobart (Apr. 8) at home, Sacred Heart (Apr. 15) on the road, Wagner (Apr. 22) at home, and Mount St. Mary’s (Apr. 29) on the road.

The 2017 Northeast Conference Championship will be held on Thursday, May 4 and Saturday, May 6 at the site of the regular-season champion. Saint Joseph’s has hosted the last three NEC Championship tournaments on Sweeney Field.

Under the direction of sixth-year head coach and three-time defending NEC Coach of the Year Taylor Wray, Saint Joseph’s returns 27 letterwinners, including the 2017 Inside Lacrosse Preseason All-American Honorable Mention and 2016 NEC Defensive Player of the Year in senior goalkeeper T.J. Jones. Alongside Jones, junior midfielder Kyle Cain and senior face-off specialist Mike Lanham earned NEC First Team honors last spring, while senior long stick midfielder Connor Kubikowski returns as an All-NEC Second Team pick.

Senior Mike Rastivo, the 2016 NEC Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year, will miss the season due to injury and will captain the Hawks from the sidelines this spring.

Additionally, Rastivo (A), Cain (M), Lanham (FOS), Jones (GK), and senior short stick defensive midfielder Anthony Joaquim were tabbed to the 2017 Inside Lacrosse Northeast Conference Preseason Coaches’ All-Conference Team back on January 10.

Entering their fourth season in the Northeast Conference this spring, the Hawks own a 17-1 regular-season conference record along with three consecutive postseason tournament appearances, including back-to-back NEC title games over the last two years.

2017 NORTHEAST CONFERENCE PRESEASON POLL
1. Saint Joseph’s (4 first-place votes)

2. Hobart (2 first-place votes)
3. Bryant (1 first-place vote)
4. Robert Morris
5. Mount St. Mary’s
6. Sacred Heart
7. Wagner

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