SALT LAKE CITY — The Westminster College men's lacrosse team was awarded the No. 2 seed for the upcoming MCLA National Championships that will be played in Greenville, S.C. from May 13-18. This is the second time in school history that they have been the second seed entering the tournament and the first time since 2007.
The Griffins drew Briarcliffe (N.Y.) in the first round with the game scheduled for 8 a.m. MT on May 13 on field No. 1 at the Wenwood Soccer Complex. Briarcliffe is the tournament's No. 15 seed and is making a fourth straight trip to the national tournament.
Westminster has posted a 14-5 record during the season and earned an automatic berth into the national tournament by virtue of winning the team's third consecutive Rocky Mountain Lacrosse Conference Tournament championship last Saturday. The Griffins only loss to a MCLA Division II team came on Feb.. 16 when they dropped an 11-10 decision to the tournament's top-seed, Saint Thomas (Minn.).
This will mark the seventh consecutive trip to the MCLA National Championships for the Griffins. They have a 9-5 record all-time at the event and sit a perfect 6-0 in the team's first game at the tournament. Westminster won the 2008 national championship after entering the tournament as the No. 1 seed. They last reached the semi-finals at the 2010 tournament and in five of the six trips they have either played for the title or lost to a team that played in the title game.
Monday's game will be the first-ever meeting between the Griffins and Briarcliffe. The Bulldogs went 9-4 during the year and earned a trip to nationals by winning the Pioneer Collegiate Lacrosse League championship despite opening the tournament with a play-in game. The upset No. 6 U.S. Coast Guard (Conn.) in the title game and gave USCG just their second loss of the season.
The winner of Monday's Westminster vs. Briarcliffe game will advance to a quarterfinal game between the winner of Palm Beach Atlantic (Fla.) and Indiana Tech. That game will be played on May 14 and start at 11:30 a.m. MT.