Men's 2014 lax schedule includes 5 ranked in preseason top 20

Men's 2014 lax schedule includes 5 ranked in preseason top 20

HAVERFORD, Pa. – The 2014 schedule starts off with a bang for Haverford College's men's lacrosse team, and doesn't get any easier as the Fords' season-opening opponent, Cabrini College, is just one of five teams ranked in the U.S. Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association's preseason top-20 poll.

Seventh-ranked Cabrini, which fell in the second round of the 2013 NCAA tournament, kicks off the season against Haverford in a Main Line match-up at Swan Field on Sat., Feb. 22. The out-of-league contest is the first of six non-Centennial Conference games that open the Fords' 2014 campaign.

A home date against Eastern University follows the opener a week later before the Fords hit the road to square off against York College. Then Mount Saint Mary (N.Y.) College comes to Swan for a mid-week match-up with a neutral-site battle against 17th-ranked Plattsburg State closing the week. Another home game, against Trinity (Conn.) College, finishes off the non-conference slate.

Eastern, also a local rival, posted the most single-season wins, 15, in its program history last spring and was one of the bubble teams to narrowly miss out on an at-large bid into the national tournament.

York lost in the semifinal round of the 2013 Capital Athletic Conference tournament, and Mount Saint Mary finished fifth in the Skyline Conference.

Plattsburg played its way into the tournament final of the 2013 State University of New York Athletic Conference where it was downed by Cortland State, a squad that worked its way into the national semifinals before ending its postseason run. Trinity, from the the New England Small College Athletic Conference, was 5-10 in 2013.

A visit by Gettysburg College on March 22 begins the Centennnial portion of the 2014 schedule for Haverford. The Bullets were losers in the semifinal round of last year's conference tournament.

A difficult road trip to visit No. 11 Washington College, also a 2013 Centennial semifinalist, follows the Gettysburg game with another Maryland trip, this one to McDaniel College, coming up next.

The Fords return to Swan in early April for a showdown with second-ranked Dickinson College. Last season the Fords took the Red Devils to the final horn in a heart-breaking 9-8 defeat. Dickinson went on to capture its third consecutive Centennial crown and made it into the national semifinals before suffering its first defeat of the season.

Games at Muhlenberg College, home against No. 20 Franklin & Marshall College then Ursinus College, and finally a road contest at Swarthmore College finish off the regular season.