LIU Post Edges NYIT In ECC Preseason Poll
from press release
CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. – The defending ECC Champion, LIU Post Pioneers, narrowly outpaced their Northern Boulevard rival, New York Institute of Technology Bears, to earn the top spot in the ECC Men's Lacrosse Preseason Poll. NYIT teammates, junior attacker Luke Miller (Mastic, N.Y.) and senior defender Danny McDermott (Vancouver, B.C.), have been named the Preseason Offensive and Defensive Players of the Year for the second consecutive year.
LIU Post and NYIT, both NCAA Tournament participants in 2013, almost evenly split the first place votes of the conference's coaches with the Pioneers grabbing five to the Bears' four. That led to a one point differential in the poll, with LIU Post coming out on top by a 77-76 margin. The Pioneers finished with an unblemished 7-0 ECC mark (11-3 overall) in 2013, while NYIT boasted a 6-1 ECC record (12-3 overall).
Dowling, the 2012 NCAA Division II National Champion, rounds out the top-three with 55 points.
The 2014 season will be the first-ever that the ECC will decide its conference champion with a post-season tournament. The ECC will host its first ever Men's Lacrosse Championship with semifinals taking place at the two highest seeds on April 30th, and the final being hosted by LIU Post on May 3rd.
The conference's preseason awards have a familiar look as Miller and McDermott were honored as the Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year, respectively, after the 2013 season. Both Miller and McDermott were also recognized with United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association All-America First Team honors for their outstanding 2013 seasons.
After winning the ECC Rookie of the Year honor in 2012, Miller's follow-up sophomore campaign was even better. In 15 games, Miller finished third in the conference with 44 goals and second with 42 assists for a conference leading total of 86 points. Miller also led all of Division II with 5.73 points per game and ranked second with 2.80 assists per game.
McDermott was a shut-down defender for the Bears, leading Division II with 2.73 caused turnovers per game. He also led the ECC with 41 caused turnovers and finished fourth in scooping up 69 ground balls.
2014 East Coast Conference Preseason Poll
1. LIU Post (5) - 77
2. New York Institute of Technology (4) - 76
3. Dowling - 55
4. Chestnut Hill - 51
5. Molloy - 50
6. Mercy - 41
7. Roberts Wesleyan - 28
8. Dominican - 15
9. District of Columbia - 12
( ) - first place votes
Preseason Offensive Player of the Year: Luke
Miller, Jr., A., NYIT
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Danny McDermott, Sr., D, NYIT