January 25, 2013

Colorado Mesa Picked Atop WILA Preseason Poll

from press release

— After winning the 2012 Western IntercollegiateLacrosse Association men's title on tiebreaking procedures, the Colorado Mesa University Mavericks have been tabbed as slight favorites to repeat in what is shaping up to be a very competitive 2013 season, according to the league's first-ever preseason coaches' poll, announced Friday (Jan. 25).

The Mavericks, who finished the 2012 season with a 9-4 overall record while finishing with a 6-2 association mark, received two first place votes and finished atop the poll with four points. The Dominican University of California Penguins, who also went 6-2 in league play in 2012, received one first place vote and placed second in the poll with five points. Adams State University also received a first place vote and finished third overall in the poll with six points.

Meanwhile, inaugural WILA Champion (2011) Notre Dame de Namur University finished fourth in the poll with nine points.

The poll, the first in the WILA's brief history, called for each of the association's four head coaches to rank the teams 1-3 while excluding his own squad.

In conjunction with the poll, the coaches also selected a Preseason All-WILA team, also a new award. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own players.

All four WILA squads were represented on the 13-member squad, selected by position, that included two defensive midfielder/faceoff specialists due to a tie in the voting.

CMU, which won the 2012 WILA title over Dominican on the association's former second tiebreaking procedure of fewest goals allowed (43) in WILA play, had five selections in midfielder Kade Robinson, defender JohnnyNitti, goalie Brad Brandenburg, long stick midfielder Zach Bullet, and defensive midfielder/faceoff specialist Jeremy Best.

Dominican, which allowed 61 goals in WILA play last season, had three Preseason All-WILA selections in attack Jake Fritz, midfielder Jake Bernstein and defender Dane Farguson.

The Adams State Grizzlies had four such selections in attack Bryden Pelletier, midfielder Josh Peterman, defender Jordan Stillwagon and defensive midfielder/faceoff specialist Johnny Neal.

NDNU was represented by attack Kevin Nguyen.

All four WILA teams will play scrimmages and exhibitions in the coming weeks leading into the first regular season game on Feb. 22 between Adams State and Pace (N.Y.), a day before Dominican will visit Notre Dame de Namur in the first WILA game of the campaign.

2013 WILA Preseason All-Conference Team

Position Name School Yr. Hometown
Attack Kevin Nguyen (1-MF) Notre Dame de NamurSr. Bainbridge Island, Wash.
Attack Jake Fritz (1) Dominican So. Issaquah, Wash.
Attack Bryden Pelletier (HM) Adams State Jr. Lantzville, British Columbia, Canada
Midfielder Josh Peterman (HM) Adams State So. Santa Ana, Calif.
Midfielder Jake Bernstein (1) Dominican So. Kirkland, Wash.
Midfielder Kade Robinson (1) Colorado Mesa Jr. Williamstown, Australia
Defender Jordan Stillwagon (1) Adams State Jr. Littleton, Colo.
Defender Johnny Nitti (1) Colorado Mesa Jr. Las Vegas, Nev.
Defender Dane Farugson Dominican So. Coronado, Calif.
Goalie Brad Brandenburg (1) Colorado Mesa Jr. Seal Beach, Calif.
Long Stick Midfielder Zach Bullett (HM) Colorado Mesa So. Draper, Utah
Def. Midfielder/Faceoff Specialist Jeremy Best (HM) Colorado Mesa Jr. Chula Vista, Calif.
Def. Midfielder/Faceoff Specialist Johnny Neal (HM) Adams State Jr. Greenwood Village, Colo.

(1)- Indicates Players selected to the 2012 First Team All-WILA squad
(HM)- Indicates Players selected to the 2012 Honorable Mention All-WILA squad
Note: Nguyen was selected as a midfielder in 2012

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