The Syracuse men’s lacrosse team will open up their 2018 season at home this Saturday, February 10th against their neighbors to the south, Binghamton University. The Orange finished last year’s season 13-3, and went into the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship ranked second overall, but ultimately lost 10-7 to No. 11 Towson in the quarterfinals.
As part of Inside Lacrosse’s 2018 Face-Off Yearbook, three Syracuse players were named to their Preseason All-Americans list. Defender Nick Mellen and midfielder Brendan Bomberry were voted onto the third team, while long-stick midfielder Austin Fusco made the honorable mention list.
Ahead of the start of the upcoming season, the Orange have been ranked No. 10 in the USILA coaches poll, No. 11 in the U.S. Lacrosse/Nike poll and No. 9 in the Inside Lacrosse Face-Off Yearbook ranking. The Orange have made it to the quarterfinals of the NCAA tournament the past three years, but there are high hopes this year to bring home the trophy. The Orange have been national champions 10 times, with their most recent title in 2009.
Fans especially have high hopes for redshirt sophomore, Mullen, as two major shoulder surgeries kept him off the field for the entire 2017 season. As a freshman, Mullen made 16 starts and played in all 17 games. He picked up 38 groundballs, the third highest on the team, and forced 14 turnovers, the second highest on the team. Mullen shows a lot of promise, as he still has half of his collegiate career ahead of him and all eyes will surely be on him on Saturday.
While the team looks ahead, they are also looking to put their most recent loss behind them. Syracuse ended their preseason this past Sunday when they fell to No. 5 Yale in a 13-8 loss, the first time the two teams have seen each other since the Orange’s 11-10 win over the Bulldogs in the first round of the 2017 NCAA Tournament. Syracuse also hosted two other preseason games in late January, beating Hofstra 11-4 and Ley Moyne 15-10. With the official season starting on Saturday, the Orange’s two wins and loss to the Bulldogs will not count towards their overall record.
Binghamton finished up the 2017 season 11-5 overall. They played in the championship game in the America East tournament, losing 20-8 to the University at Albany, losing the opportunity to make it to the NCAA Championship.
The last time Syracuse faced off against Binghamton was last April when the Orange celebrated senior day, beating the Bearcats 9-8.