The Syracuse Orange lacrosse programs are ringing in the new year with good news.
On Wednesday, US Lacrosse Magazine dropped their 2021 Division 1 Preseason polls, and they gave both the Orange men and women reason to feel great about their respective upcoming seasons.
After an offseason headlined by impact transfers and the return of several program staples, Duke is No. 1 in the Nike/USL Division I Men’s Preseason Top 20.— US Lacrosse Magazine (@USLacrosseMag) January 6, 2021
Orange supporters won’t be happy to see the ‘Cuse men behind Duke, but that was an inevitability after the offseason they had bringing in the best college player in the world in Michael Sowers, No. 1 incoming freshman Brennan O’Neill, and some other important pieces to shore up their face-off and goalie deficiencies.
Syracuse did not share a similar offseason on the transfer market, mostly because the roster was already loaded with so much talent that the big transfers looked elsewhere. That talent, which includes US Lacrosse Magazine preseason All-Americans Brendan Curry and Drake Porter, is the reason why the Orange still find themselves just off the top of the rankings.
In totality, the ACC placed all five of their teams inside the top 10, with North Carolina (No. 6) and Notre Dame (No. 10) rounding the conference out. Half of the top 10 are ACC teams? Some things just never change.
Somehow, North Carolina got even better. The Tar Heels are No. 1 in the Nike/USL Division I Women's Preseason Top 20.— US Lacrosse Magazine (@USLacrosseMag) January 6, 2021
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On the women’s side, the Orange are slotted behind No. 1 North Carolina Tar Heels, No. 2 Notre Dame Fighting Irish, and No. 3 Loyola Greyhounds. Stony Brook, the only team to defeated any Syracuse lacrosse team in 2020, rounds out the top 5 for the women.
The men finished the 2020 season ranked No. 1 in the polls, going 5-0 in the shortened season. With the bulk of the seniors returning for one final shot at their championship dreams, the Orange have one of the deepest and most talented rosters in the country.
Similarly, the women finished 2020 with a 7-1 record and ranked No. 4 in the polls. They also received good news with the return of multiple senior contributors, led by Tewaarton candidate Emily Hawryschuk. Gary Gait’s squad is loaded for another championship weekend run.