|(above) The tailgating kicks off at 3 PM on Wednesday|
#10 DU vs. #3 Loyola
Wednesday @ 5 PM
Peter Barton Stadium
The University of Denver lacrosse team captured the Eastern College Athletic Conference tournament last spring, grabbing the automatic qualifier to the NCAA Tournament and advancing to the Final Four. Due to three one goal losses to nationally ranked teams, the Pioneers face a much more daunting road to the NCAA Tournament this time around.
The #10 Pioneers must win the ECAC Semi-Final on Wednesday against #3 Loyola for a shot at repeating last season's magical run. They've compiled an 8-5 overall record and a 3-3 league mark, which made them the No. 4 seed behind No. 1 seed Loyola (12-1 overall and 6-0 in the ECAC), No. 2 seed Ohio State (8-6, 5-1) and No. 3 seed Fairfield (11-3, 4-2).
Denver jumped back on track with a 15-9 upset of #4 Duke last Friday, and coach Bill Tierney said that outcome should solidify a spot in the NCAA tournament.
“Absolutely,” he said in a conference call Monday of the four coaches participating in the conference tournament. “If you look at our body of work and our schedule and the teams we’ve lost to – which a lot of people forget comes into play in these talks at the committee level – if you go by this week’s rankings, you’re looking at a loss to Notre Dame which is No. 2, we lost to Loyola which is No. 3, we beat Duke which is No. 4. So we feel like we’ve played a good schedule, and we feel like we’re there, but that’s not what’s important this weekend. We’ve got Loyola on Wednesday. That’s the only thing we’re thinking about right now.”