Panthers making seventh tournament appearance in program history
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Plymouth State University will face #17 SUNY Cortland in the first round of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III Women's Lacrosse Championship Tournament at Gooding Field on the campus of Amherst College on Saturday (May 12).
The parallels between the two teams make for an intriguing matchup.
The Panthers (14-3) have won 11 straight games following a 3-3 start and rolled through the Little East Conference (LEC) with a perfect 6-0 mark. PSU outscored its conference opponents by a 105-49 margin during the regular season, leading the league in both scoring offense and scoring defense, before advancing to a fifth-straight LEC title game.
Plymouth State, under the guidance of second-year head coach Sandy Bridgeman, held off a pesky fourth-seeded University of Massachusetts Dartmouth team, 15-12, in the conference semifinals last Thursday, before blowing past second-seeded Eastern Connecticut State University, 19-8, for its seventh LEC crown on Saturday. PSU raced out to a 12-2 lead in the first half, before coasting to the win.
Representing the State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC), SUNY Cortland (15-4) took a similar path to the tournament. The Red Dragons have won ten consecutive games and, like the Panthers, rolled through the conference regular season with an unblemished 8-0 record.
Cortland also faced its biggest challenge in the semifinal round of the conference tournament. After sneaking past Oswego State, 13-10, in the semifinal, Cortland jumped out to a 14-3 halftime lead and cruised to a 19-5 win in over SUNY Brockport to claim its 20th straight title.
Plymouth State is making its seventh appearance in the tournament. The Panthers own a 1-6 mark in NCAA tournament play, but in a strange coincidence earned their sole win in a first round game in 2004 against a team from New York in a game played at Amherst. PSU topped Ithaca College by a 14-12 score.
The host Mammoths will face the winner in a second round game on Sunday (May 13).
PSU Women's Lacrosse in the NCAA Tournament
|May 11, 2000||Middlebury||Middlebury, Vt.||L, 24-5|
|May 12, 2001||Middlebury||Middlebury, Vt.||L, 23-5|
|May 8, 2004||Ithaca||Amherst, Mass.||W, 14-12|
|May 9, 2004||Amherst||Amherst, Mass.||L, 21-6|
|May 10, 2006||Colby||Waterville, Maine||L, 21-5|
|May 10, 2014||Colby||Waterville, Main||L, 16-5|
|May 13, 2017||Middlebury||Middlebury, Vt.||L, 13-1|
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