February 3, 2009

Limestone Men's Lacrosse Chosen by Coaches as Preseason No. 1

HIGH POINT, N.C. -- Limestone College was chosen by league head coaches as the preseason favorite in Conference Carolinas. The Saints are coming off a 2008 season that included a 12-2, (5-0 conference) record and an NCAA Division II semifinal appearance. Head Coach Mike Cerino and his squad will look to build on the success of 2008 and earn a tenth consecutive appearance in the NCAA tournament.


Limestone was picked fifth in the NCAA Division II preseason polls by both Inside Lacrosse's Faceoff Yearbook and Lacrosse Magazine. The Saints return two starters at attack and defense, and four of the team's top six midfielders from 2008. They will lean on senior net minder and Inside Lacrosse Preseason All-American James Tuohy, junior defenseman and Inside Lacrosse Preseason All-American Spencer Wims, and 2008 Second-Team All-American selection and the Conference Carolinas Player of the Year in senior Brendan Storrier.

The 2008 Conference Carolinas Tournament Champion Belmont Abbey College men's lacrosse team has been ranked second in the preseason poll as voted on by conference coaches. The Crusaders are ranked tenth in the nation according to the Lacrosse Magazine preseason poll. The Abbey also ended the 2008 season ranked tenth in the final poll of the season.

The Crusaders are coming off of their most successful season in program history as they captured the 2008 Conference Carolinas championship. After upsetting the third-ranked and previously unbeaten Limestone Saints 11-10 on their home field, Belmont Abbey finished in a tie for second place, finishing with a 9-4 overall record (3-2 conference). First year head coach Jim Dietsch was named the Conference Coach of the Year, while Michael Brown and defender Tristan Keas were both named to the second team.

Queens University of Charlotte finished third in the coaches pre-season poll. This is the third time in as many years that the Royals have been chosen as a top three conference preseason team. Four of the 2008 All-Conference selections are returning, and will be looked at to provide leadership to the rest of the team. "This season we have great depth and athleticism," said head coach Jim Fritz. "We are excited to see the mix of the returning players and the newcomers that will help to put us back in the conference championship" Queens returns 21 letter-winners from 2008 and adds 19 new players, including three midyear pickups.

Rounding out the men's lacrosse preseason poll 4-6 was: St. Andrews, Pfeiffer and Lees-McRae.

Conference Carolinas Preseason Coaches Poll
(First place votes in parentheses)
1. Limestone College (5) 25
2. Belmont Abbey College (1) 20
3. Queens University of Charlotte 18
4. St. Andrews Presbyterian College 13
5. Pfeiffer University 9
6. Lees-McRae College 5