How does Ohio lacrosse top the stellar 2017 season that it had? Last year we were able to witness Ohio make a strong statement in the game of lacrosse—not just in the win-loss columns, but in the way to make lacrosse sustainable long-term in our great state. We were able to enjoy the Ohio State Buckeyes making it to Memorial Day weekend, the Big Red of Denison made it to the Final Four in Division III, and of course the Machine take home the MLL title. The Ohio High School Athletic Association added boys and girls lacrosse as sanctioned sports. Ohio also had the birth of its second NCAA Division I program in Cleveland State University. The Ohio Athletic Conference, the third oldest conference in the United States, announced that Marietta College would be adding lacrosse. The significance? This is the 10th and final institution in the league to add the game and completes the conference.
How are things looking for 2018 for the game?
NCAA Division III Ohio schools are currently 13-5 over out-of-state opponents
The NCAC so far has made a strong statement with some solid statement wins verses some defending league champs. Here are some notable wins:
February 10th: Wittenberg beats the 2017 Ohio River champions Transylvania College 8-5
February 24th: Ohio Wesleyan takes down Messiah College, which finished as runner up of MAC Commonwealth Conference in 2017
February 25th: Denison beats the 2017 MAC Commonwealth champions Stevenson 11-10
February 25th: Wooster upsets the 2017 Michigan Intercollegiate Champs Albion College 10-7
On the NCAA Division I Front
The Ohio State Buckeyes are picking up where they left off kicking off their 2018 campaign off by going 4-0, with two wins coming over nationally ranked opponents. Cleveland State University picked up their first win of the season with a solid victory over Air Force Academy on February 23rd.
The Ohio Machine will host the inaugural Ohio Machine High School Showcase on March 17th The showcase will feature some of the best of Ohio High School lacrosse with a quintuple header to start the 2018 High School lacrosse season.
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To see where Ohio High Schools are stacking up verses out-of-state competition you won’t have to look far. The state’s Division I defending champs Cincinnati Moeller will compete against five out-of-state teams. They will test themselves against traditional Tennessee power Montgomery Bell Academy, Kentucky staple Louisville Trinity and Indiana’s very own Cathedral Prep. This is one heck of an out-of-state buzz saw! Traditional state power Upper Arlington will kick off the season playing eastern Pennsylvania power Malvern Prep HS. Another state final four team will find itself challenged by some out-of-state contenders as well. St. X will cross the likes of Brother Rice from Michigan and New Treir from Illinois. If that wasn’t enough St. Ignatius from Cleveland will square up with both Coronado and Torrey Pines of California and to mention Western NY’s Hamburg HS. After this spring you will be able to compare just these three against top powers from 8 different states!
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Major League Lacrosse
The Machine will kick off the 2018 campaign on April 29th. Representatives from Herff Jones, the official ring designer of Ohio Machine’s 2017 championship ring, will present the Machine players and coaches with their rings in a special pre-game on-field celebration. The squad will have little time to bury that thought as they will take on 2015 MLL Champs rival New York Lizards. No rest for the wicked, for we know 2017 was fun but yet a distant memory!