PISCATAWAY, NJ – The Rutgers men’s lacrosse team has earned its second preseason Top 25 ranking in two weeks, as the Scarlet Knights are ranked No. 14 in the Face-Off Yearbook Coaches Poll, the organization announced today.
Rutgers received 594 points in the poll of 53 Division I head coaches. Last week, Rutgers was ranked sixth in the Inside Lacrosse top 20 preseason poll.
Sophomore goalkeeper Greg Havalchak (Corning, NY) and senior attackman Delby Powless (Six Nations, Ontario) were named to Face-Off’s Preseason All-America Third Team. Havalchak is coming off a sensational freshman campaign, as he earned ECAC Freshman of the Year and Goalkeeper of the Year honors. He was tabbed as the nation’s top freshman by Inside Lacrosse Magazine after starting all 15 games and registering a 7.64 goals-against average last spring. He made 188 saves with a .625 save percentage.
Powless was RU’s leading scorer last year with 32 goals and four assists. A First Team All-ECAC pick, he enjoyed one of the best single-games in Rutgers history, netting seven goals at No. 10 Navy last March. He also scored three times in a 12-9 victory over No. 3 UMass in the regular season finale.
Defending National Champion Virginia is ranked No. 1 in the Face-Off Coaches Poll, while Johns Hopkins, the national runner-up in 2003, is second. The Scarlet Knights are one of four ECAC teams in the Top 15, along with Georgetown (No. 6), UMass (No. 7) and Penn State (No. 15). In all, Rutgers will play eight teams who are ranked in the poll.
Led by ECAC and National Coach of the Year Jim Stagnitta, Rutgers had the most dramatic turnaround in Division I, improving from 2-12 in 2002 to 10-5 last spring to earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Scarlet Knights return seven starters and begins its season on Feb. 28 against No. 20 Dartmouth in Baltimore, MD.
Face-Off Yearbook Coaches Poll
Johns Hopkins (24)
(first place votes in parenthesis)
Preseason First Team All-America Team
Attack: Kyle Barrie (jr. Johns Hopkins); Michael Powell (sr. Syracuse); Ryan Boyle (sr. Princeton); John Christmas (jr. Virginia)
Midfield: Kyle Harrison (jr. Johns Hopkins); Kevin Boland (sr. Johns Hopkins); Sean Lindsay (sr. Syracuse); Walid Hajj (sr. Georgetown)
Face Off: Andy Corno (jr. Georgetown)
Long-Stick Midfielder: Rob Bateman (sr. Penn State)
Defensemen: Chris Passavia (sr. Maryland); Brett Hughes (sr. Virginia); Lee Zink (sr. Maryland); Ronnie Staines (sr. North Carolina)
Goalkeeper: Tillman Johnson (sr. Virginia)
Preseason Second Team All-America Team
Attack: Joe Yevoli (jr. Virginia); Jeff Zywicki (sr. UMass); Jed Prossner (jr. North Carolina); Sean Greenhalgh (jr. Cornell)
Midfield: Conor Ford (sr. Johns Hopkins); Kyle Dixon (so. Virginia); Ned Britt (sr. Yale); Ben Grinnell (jr. Dartmouth)
Face Off: Jack deVilliers (jr. Virginia)
Long-Stick Midfielder: Corey Harned (sr. Johns Hopkins)
Defensemen: Pat Keeley (jr. Dartmouth); Matt Garcia (jr. UMass); Brian Zuchelli (sr. Hofstra); Greg Bice (sr. Ohio State)
Goalkeeper: Andrew Goldstein (jr. Dartmouth)
Preseason Third Team All-America Team
Attack: Matt Rewkowski (jr. Johns Hopkins); Stephen Brundage (sr. Loyola); Jason Doneger (jr. Princeton); Delby Powless (sr. Rutgers)
Midfield Scott Davidson (jr. Denver); Bryant Will (jr. North Carolina); Tom Daniels (sr. Dartmouth); Steve Vallone (sr. Syracuse)
Face Off: Peter Vlahakis (sr. Fairfield)
Long-Stick Midfielder: Brodie Merrill (jr. Georgetown)
Defensemen: Tim DeBlois (sr. Cornell); Ricky Schultz (sr. Princeton); Cory Vann (sr. Denver); Jack Reid so. UMass)
Goalkeeper: Greg Havalchak (so. Rutgers)