March 8, 2012

Monmouth to Add D-I Men's Lacrosse in 2013-14

from staff reports

WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J. - Monmouth University will add NCAA Division I men's lacrosse for the 2013-14 season, university vice president and director of athletics Dr. Marilyn McNeil announced Thursday, after consulting with the university's trustees. The sport will be Monmouth's 21st at the Division I level.

The team will compete in the Northeast Conference, which inlcudes Mount St. Mary's, Bryant, Quinnipiac, Robert Morris, Sacred Heart and Wagner. Monmouth's women's team competes in the same conference.

The number of Division I men's teams expected by 2015 is now 66 after Monmouth's announcement. Sixty-one schools are fielding teams for the current season. High Point (N.C.) and Marquette (Wisc.) will start for the spring 2013 season, Boston University will elevate its club team to varsity for 2014 and Furman University (S.C.) is slated to start both men's and women's teams by 2015.

"We are very excited about the opportunity of adding men's lacrosse to our varsity sport offerings," McNeil said. "Men's lacrosse has seen a 28.5 percent growth spurt in the NCAA, with high school growth pegged at 175 percent over the past 10 years."

"The Northeast Conference sponsors men's lacrosse and I know it is a 'hot sport' for the Shore," McNeil said. "We look forward to meeting the needs of our students, as they have shown their interest with a very competitive club program. We think the lacrosse athletes, their fans, the community and the student body will really enjoy and support this sport."

The NEC, which named men's lacrosse its 23rd sport of sponsorship in 2011, will host its second-ever men's lacrosse championship on May 4 and 6 at the site of the highest seed.

A national search will commence to find Monmouth's inaugural coach, who is expect to be at the university nearly a full year before the inaugural season.

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