Navy Gets No. 2 Seed In NCAA Tournament
Maryland Is No. 3; Georgetown Earns Fifth Seed
By Christian Swezey
Special to The Washington Post
Tuesday, May 11, 2004; Page D06
The Navy, Maryland and Georgetown men's lacrosse teams made the 16-team field for the NCAA tournament, it was announced yesterday, and each will host a first-round game this weekend.
The Midshipmen (12-2) earned the No. 2 seed and will host Pennsylvania in a first-round game Sunday at noon. Penn (7-6) was ranked No. 13 in the most recent U.S. Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association poll.
If Navy wins, it likely would play No. 7 seed Cornell (8-4) in a quarterfinal on Cornell's home field in Ithaca, N.Y. The Big Red plays Hobart (9-6) in a first round game on Sunday.
The scenario may not seem that daunting to Navy. The Midshipmen have won road games against Maryland, Georgetown, North Carolina and Army; each of those teams made the NCAA tournament.
"We're happy to be the number two seed," said Navy Coach Richie Meade. "Believe me, if we get to Cornell, we'll be happy. We don't care where we play. All the analyzing and worrying about it is over. It's time to go out and play."
The selection committee did not take into consideration there was a chance that the No. 2 seed might play at a lower seeded team in the second round, according to committee chairman Chappy Menninger, the athletic director at Mount St. Mary's.
"We didn't look into the second round," Menninger said. "That's really, really not what we do. We're not trying to make sure that certain teams get sent anywhere. . . . [The second round] is not a consideration."
Georgetown (10-3) was given a No. 5 seed and will host Towson (11-4) on Sunday at 1 p.m. It will be the first meeting between the teams in Georgetown Coach Dave Urick's 14 seasons.
On a whim, Urick said he went to watch Towson's 12-7 victory over Villanova in the Colonial Athletic Association title game on Saturday.
"We [scrimmaged] them in the fall and they spanked us pretty good," Urick said. "That's probably something we're going to have to remind our kids."
Maryland (12-2) was given a No. 3 seed and plays Army (10-4) on Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. The Black Knights made the tournament despite not making the four-team Patriot League tournament.
Army is led by a pair of attackmen, junior Jim Wagner and sophomore John Walker. Wagner has a team-high 41 goals; Walker, the son of former New York Jets wide receiver Wesley Walker, has 33 goals.
"They have a very good offensive team," Maryland Coach Dave Cottle said. "We've taken care of business in two of the three areas we wanted [the regular season and the ACC tournament]. Now we get to see how good we are in the [NCAA] tournament."
Johns Hopkins (11-1) is the overall No. 1 seed. The final four is at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore May 29 and 31. The event already has sold more than 26,000 tickets, according to published reports.
Maryland is going for its first NCAA title since 1975. Navy has not won an NCAA tournament. Virginia (5-8), the defending national champion, was not eligible for the tournament after it did not finish with a .500 or better record. The Cavaliers are the first defending champion to miss the tournament the next year since Cornell in 1972.
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