NCAA Lacrosse: #4 Denver Men’s Lacrosse Picked To Win 2014 BIG East Conference Title


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The No. 4 University of Denver men’s lacrosse team was picked to win the BIG East in its first season as an affiliate member, the league office announced Wednesday. Denver topped the poll with 36 points and six first-place votes, while St. John’s took second with 31 points and the last remaining first-place vote.

“I would imagine that our 2013 team success moved the coaches to vote the Pioneers as a favorite going into the 2014 season,” said head coach Bill Tierney. “We have such great respect and admiration for all of our BIG EAST opponents and their coaches, and are very aware of the effort it will take to be successful in this league. We look forward to our inaugural season and will do whatever it takes to convince our conference affiliates that they made the right decision in admitting us.”

Big East LacrosseVillanova was third with 25 points, followed by Georgetown with 22 points. Rounding out the poll were Providence and Rutgers, which tied for fifth with 12 points apiece, and Marquette in seventh with nine points.

Voting was conducted by the seven BIG EAST head men’s lacrosse coaches who could not cast ballots for their own players or teams.

The Pioneers enter the conference following two appearances in the NCAA semifinals in the last three seasons

St. John’s senior attackman Kieran McArdle was named BIG EAST Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, while Villanova senior long-stick midfielder John LoCascio was picked the Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.

Denver placed a conference-high four on the preseason quad, including seniors Jeremy Noble (Orangeville, Ontario) and Jamie Faus (Lakeville, Conn.), and juniors Wesley Berg (Coquitlam, B.C.) and Carson Cannon (Stillwater, Minn.).

“As we move into the BIG EAST Conference, our excitement for playing against new teams and their great players, is very high,” Tierney said. “We are always very proud of our players when acknowledged for their individual abilities, and these ballot results are especially honored because they are voted upon by the conference coaches.”

Georgetown and Villanova tied with three selections apiece. Senior defender John Urbank, junior attackman Reilly O’Connor and junior midfielder Charlie McCormick represented the Hoyas, while the senior defensive pair of Chris Conroy and Chris Piccirilli joined LoCascio from the Wildcats.

Providence (senior midfielder Andrew Barton), Rutgers (junior face-off specialist Joe Nardella) and St. John’s (McArdle) placed one student-athlete each on the team.

Denver (14-5, 6-1 ECAC in 2013) enters the BIG EAST as the favorite in 2014. The Pioneers’ 2013 season ended with a 9-8 heartbreaker to Syracuse in the NCAA semifinals at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa. The Pioneers are ranked fourth in both the USILA Coaches and Warrior Inside Lacrosse media polls released on Monday.

2014 BIG EAST Men’s Lacrosse Preseason Coaches’ Poll

1. Denver – 36 points (6 first-place votes)

2. St. John’s – 31 (1)

3. Villanova – 25

4. Georgetown – 22

5. Providence – 12

Rutgers – 12

7. Marquette – 9

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year

Kieran McArdle, St. John’s, Sr., A ^

Preseason Defensive Player of the Year

John LoCascio, Villanova, Sr., LSM ^

All-BIG EAST Team

Wesley Berg, Denver, Jr., A ^

Reilly O’Connor, Georgetown, Jr., A

Kieran McArdle, St. John’s, Sr., A ^

Jeremy Noble, Denver, Sr., M ^

Charlie McCormick, Georgetown, Jr., M

Andrew Barton, Providence, Sr., M

Carson Cannon, Denver, Jr., D ^

John Urbank, Georgetown, Sr., D

Chris Conroy, Villanova, Sr., D

Chris Piccirilli, Villanova, Sr., D

John LoCascio, Villanova, Sr., LSM ^

Joe Nardella, Rutgers, Jr., FO

Jamie Faus, Denver, Sr., GK

^ – unanimous selections

Denver opens the 2014 season on Saturday, Feb. 8 at Air Force at 1 p.m. MT. The Pioneers then travel to take on defending national champions Duke on Saturday, Feb. 15 in Durham, N.C.

Season tickets are on sale for the 2014 season for $70 (seven games). Single-game tickets are available for $9. Children, ages two and under, are free and can only sit on a lap. DU students are free with a valid Pioneer Card.

Tickets for the Frontier Airlines Face-Off Classic are also on sale. The two-day, four-game pass must be purchased in advance and is available for $20. Face-Off Classic single-day passes (two games) are $15.

To purchase tickets, fans can do so in person at the Daniel L. Ritchie Center Box Office, online at www.DenverPioneers.com/Tickets or at 303-871-2336.

For groups of 20 or more, tickets are available for a discounted price. To purchase tickets, fans can do so in person at the Daniel L. Ritchie Center Box Office, online at www.DenverPioneers.com/Tickets or at 303-871-2336.

With a donation of $300 and the purchase of a full-season ticket package, fans can experience the Peter Barton Stadium Gold Club, which offers a pre- and in-game buffet, private cash bar, mid-field seating area, game notes and the ability to purchase additional Gold Club individual tickets.

Or with a donation of $600 and the purchase of at least two full-season ticket packages, fans can experience the Gold Club in addition to “Lax Zone” premium parking.

The “Lax Zone,” is located on the north side of the Daniel L. Ritchie Center in the surface parking lot and serves as the premium tailgating experience for fans, with the hopes of creating the best home-field advantage possible while also branding Denver, Colo., as the Lacrosse Capital of the West.

The “Lax Zone” features season-long reserved spaces for fans to host their friends and family and share in the Pioneer spirit prior to face-off. Fans who have a “Lax Zone” tailgating spot will receive one parking space just steps away from Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium.

To secure your Denver Lacrosse Gold Club and/or “Lax Zone” parking space for this season, please contact Ryan Lowe, Director of Development at (303) 871-3720 or Ryan.Lowe@du.edu.

– EXPERIENCE DENVER ATHLETICS –

Visit DenverPioneers.com for complete coverage of all 17 of DU’s NCAA Division I sports.

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