Lions Tabbed Eighth in Lacrosse Magazine's Preseason Poll
Jan. 6, 2014
LM's Preseason Top 20
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - Nittany Lion men's lacrosse earned another No. 8 preseason ranking on Monday as Lacrosse Magazine tabbed Penn State in the top 10. The Nittany Lions were also rated eighth by Inside Lacrosse's staff & the coaches the magazine contacted in December.
Penn State, led by fourth-year head coach Jeff Tambroni, is the only team in the Colonial Athletic Association ranked by Lacrosse Magazine. The publication compiled the rankings after consultation with college coaches.
The Nittany Lions, who will open practice Monday, Jan. 11, are set to face six teams ranked in LM's Top 20: No. 4 Denver, No. 5 Notre dame, No. 10 Albany, No. 11 Loyola, No. 15 Ohio State and No. 20 Villanova.
Last season was one of Penn State's finest in school history as the Nittany Lions amassed a school-record 12 victories, an undefeated regular season CAA title and its third NCAA Tournament appearance, which happened to be Penn State's first home NCAA game.
The Nittany Lions return 2013 USILA All-America First-Team and Ensign C. Markland Kelly, Jr. Award winner Austin Kaut (Morton, Pa.). Also returning is 2013 leading scorer and CAA Rookie of the Year, sophomore TJ Sanders (Orillia, Ont.), who tallied 44 goals last season along with senior attackman Shane Sturgis (Downingtown, Pa.) with his 27 goals. Senior midfielder Tom LaCrosse (Canandaigua, N.Y.) rounds out the attacking presence following his career season of 23 goals, which earned him an All-CAA First Team honor.
Everyone on defense is back for the Nittany Lions including starting close defenders: junior Jack Donnelly (Toronto, Ont.), redshirt-senior Tyler Travis (Geneva, N.Y.), junior JP Burnside (Garden City, N.Y.). The dynamic trio of long-stick midfielders is also set for another season in Happy Valley: senior Kessler Brown (Springfield, Va.), senior Steven Bogert (Carlsbad, Calif.) and sophomore James Burke (Duxbury, Mass.). Travis and Bogert were All-CAA First Team honorees last season, while Burke was an All-CAA Freshman Team mention.
Penn State's 2014 campaign kicks off with a home game on Feb. 8 against Michigan at 1 p.m. Prior to that contest, the Nittany Lions host Lehigh in an exhibition on Thursday, Jan. 23 at 5:45 p.m. before taking on future Big Ten rival Johns Hopkins in a Feb. 1 exhibition in Baltimore.
2014 LM PRESEASON STAFF POLL