May 6, 2012

St. Thomas Leads MCLA Division II Bracket

For the second time in the last three seasons, St. Thomas will enter the MCLA Division II national tournament as the No. 1 seed. The tournament, which consists of 16 teams, will take place over a six-day span starting on May 14 in Greenville, S.C.

As expected, both the Upper Midwest Lacrosse League (UMLL) and the Central Collegiate Lacrosse Association (CCLA) grabbed three bids to the tournament. St. Thomas led the UMLL contingent and was joined by fifth-seeded St. John's and ninth-seeded North Dakota State. Second-seeded Grand Valley State was the cream of the CCLA crop, which also included fourth-seeded Dayton and sixth-seeded Davenport.

Westminster was the flagbearer for the western schools. The Griffins are the third-seed and will face 14th-seed St. Mary's (Calif.), which will be making its first appearance in the MCLA tournament. The Gaels were the winners of the Western Collegiate Lacrosse League, but that conference doesn't have an AQ so they were admitted as an at-large.

Tenth-seed Grand Canyon and 11th-seed Concordia – both members of the Southwestern Lacrosse Conference – are also first-time attendees. Grand Canyon, which played in NCAA Division II last year, won the SLC AQ while Concordia beat out conference rival Cal State Fullerton for an at-large berth. Washington U. (St. Louis), the 15th seed, is also making its maiden trip to nationals

SCAD (7th-seed), Western Oregon (16th), Sam Houston State (13th), Elon (12th) and Briarcliffe (8th) are all making return visits.

The tournament will kick off on Monday, May 14 with the first round followed on Tuesday, May 15 with quarterfinal action. After an off day on Wednesday, May 16, the semifinals will be held on Thursday, May 17. The finals will occur on Saturday, May 18.

First Round Games

No. 16 Western Oregon vs. No. 1 St. Thomas
No. 15 Washington U. vs. No. 2 Grand Canyon
No. 14 St. Mary's vs. No. 3 Westminster
No. 13 Sam Houston State vs. No. 4 Dayton
No. 12 Elon vs. No. 5 St. John's
No. 11 Concordia vs. No. 4 Davenport
No. 10 Grand Canyon vs. NO. 7 SCAD
No. 9 North Dakota State vs. No. 8 Briarcliffe

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