CAA Men's Lacrosse 2013 Final Report
2013 CAA CHAMPIONSHIP RECAP: Penn State (No. 1), Drexel (No. 2), Towson (No. 3) and Massachusetts (No. 4) advanced to the 2013 CAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship. As the top-seed, Penn State earned the right to host the 2013 CAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship, which will include the entire final four setting in 2013. All three games were played at the Penn State Lacrosse Field in University Park (May 1 & 3). The CAA semifinals were held on May 1, as top-seeded Penn State downed fourth-seeded UMass, 10-7, and third-seeded Towson earned an 11-8 victory over second-seeded Drexel. Towson earned its first CAA Men’s Lacrosse title since 2005 with an 11-10 victory over top-seeded PSU on May 3 in University Park, Pa.
TWO CAA TEAMS SELECTED TO NCAA’S: Penn State and Towson advanced to the 2013 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse postseason. The Nittany Lions earned an overall No. 8 seed and the right to host a first round contest. They fell to Yale, 10-7, in the opening round. Towson, which earned the league’s automatic bid after winning the CAA title, was selected to face overall-No. 3 Ohio State in the opening round. The Tigers suffered a 16-6 loss to the Buckeyes. The CAA has seen multiple teams selected to the NCAA tournament four of the last five seasons. Delaware advanced to the semifinals in 2007, but fell to Johns Hopkins, 8-3. In 2003, Towson advanced to the quarterfinals with an 11-6 victory over Penn State in the first round, before falling to Johns Hopkins, 14-6, in the quarters. This is the Tigers’ fifth trip to the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse tournament as a league member and it is Penn State’s first since joining the CAA in 2010.
DREXEL HOSTED NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP WEEKEND: The Division I Semifinal and Championship games, and the Division II and III Championship games, were held at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pa., from May 25-27, and were hosted by CAA member Drexel.
2013 TOP TOP POSTSEASON HONORS (Full CAA honors list in attached PDF)
CAA MEN’S LACROSSE PLAYER OF THE YEAR &
CAA MEN’S LACROSSE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Austin Kaut • Penn State | Jr., GK, Morton, Pa./Springfield (Delco)
Kaut, a three-time All-CAA honoree and 2011 CAA Rookie of the Year, helped Penn State holding its opponents to just 7.59 goals per game and posting the third best goal-against average (7.37) among all Division I men’s lacrosse goalies at the end of the 2013 season. The junior keeper completed the year with a 61.0 save percentage, which ranked second in the nation, and averaged 11.4 saves per game. Kaut helped the Nittany Lions achieve a No. 13 national ranking with wins over nationally-ranked teams, such as Denver, Bucknell, and Drexel. PSU also took nationally-ranked Notre-Dame and Ohio State into overtime before suffering one-goal losses. Kaut is the second player to earn CAA Player and Defensive Player of the Year honors in the same season, joining Hofstra’s Nicky Polanco in 2002.
CAA MEN’S LACROSSE COACH OF THE YEAR
Jeff Tambroni • Penn State
Tambroni led nationally-ranked Penn State to a perfect 6-0 mark in conference play and the Nittany Lions’ third-straight appearance in the CAA championship. Penn State advanced to the CAA Championship game as the top-seed and earned an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament as the overall No. 8 seed and host of an opening round game. The Nittany Lions finished with an overall mark of 12-5. PSU’s 10-7 semifinal victory over Massachusetts was a first in CAA postseason play for PSU and Tambroni. Under the direction of Tambroni, the Nittany Lions led the nation in scoring defense, holding their opponents to just 7.59 goals per game. This is the second CAA Coach of the Year honor for Tambroni, after receiving Co-Coach of the Year accolades in 2011.
CAA MEN’S LACROSSE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
TJ Sanders • Penn State | Fr., A, Orillia, Ont./The Millbrook School (N.Y.)
Sanders led the league in goals per game with 2.6 per contest and finished ranked 15th in the nation in that category. The rookie attacker scored 44 goals on the season to go along with five assists for 49 points. He picked up 18 groundballs. Sanders earned five CAA Rookie of the Week awards, and received CAA Player of the Week accolades on April 15. Sanders is the program’s second CAA Rookie of the Year honoree, just two years after Kaut received the award in 2011.
PSU’S KAUT HEADLINES ALL-AMERICA SELECTIONS: Penn State junior goalkeeper Austin Kaut was named to The United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) All-American First Team in a vote by the organization. The CAA also had seven student-athletes pick up All-American Honorable Mention accolades following the 2013 season. Kaut became the first Nittany Lion to earn first-team honors in 73 years. By virtue of his first-team honor, the junior earned the Ensign C. Markland Kelly, Jr. Award, which is presented annually to the nation’s top goalie in college lacrosse. Kaut was joined by teammates Jack Forster and Tom Lacrosse, as they received honorable mention accolades. Towson’s Andrew Wascavage and Thomas DeNapoli, Drexel’s Robert Church and Ben McIntosh and Massachusetts’ Jake Smith also received honorable mention.
FAIRFIELD TO JOIN CAA MLAX IN 2015: The CAA announced that Fairfield University will join the league as an associate member and will begin competition in 2015. The Stags, who are currently a member of the ECAC Lacrosse League, went 8-7 in 2013 and played in the ECAC Tournament for the third time in as many seasons. Fairfield has won a combined 20 games over the past two seasons, compiling a program-best 12-4 mark in 2012. The Stags spent 16 weeks in the USILA national poll over the last two seasons, climbing as high as No. 13 in both seasons.
SAINT JOSEPH’S & PENN STATE TO DEPART THE CAA: Saint Joseph’s recently accepted an invitation to join the Northeast Conference as an associate member to begin immediately with the 2014 season. The Hawks played as an associate member in the CAA for three seasons. Penn State also announced its departure when the Big Ten Conference formally announced the establishment of both men’s and women’s lacrosse as conference sponsored sports for the spring of 2015. The Nittany Lions will play one more regular season as an associate member of the CAA. PSU has played four complete campaigns as an associate member in the CAA compiling a 30-29 overall mark and 16-7 record in conference play, including three CAA Championship appearances and one regular season title (2013).
2013 CAA PRESEASON RUNDOWN: Massachusetts, which captured its first CAA men’s lacrosse championship a year ago, was picked to win the Colonial Athletic Association title again in 2013 according to a vote of the league’s head lacrosse coaches at the start of the season. The Minutemen received five first-place votes and finished atop the poll with 35 points. Penn State earned two first-place nods and was second with 31 points, while Drexel and Hofstra tied at third with 22 points apiece. Delaware (16) and Towson (15) placed at fifth and sixth, respectively, followed by Saint Joseph’s. The league’s coaches also selected UMass senior attacker Will Manny as the CAA’s Preseason Player of the Year.
HOFSTRA’S SELVA EARNS NATIONAL POW: Hofstra sophomore goalkeeper Chris Selva was named the National Lacrosse Player of the Week by the Baltimore Sun on March 15. He recorded the fourth victory and the biggest one of his young career in the Pride’s 8-7 win over No. 2 Notre Dame. The first-year starter recorded 11 saves, including seven in the second half, to lead Hofstra to the victory and propel the Pride into the national Top 10 in the two NCAA Division I Polls. The 11 stops were one off his season best (set against Sacred Heart in the season opener.)
TEWAARATON NOMINEES: The Tewaaraton Foundation has announced the 2013 Tewaaraton Award men’s and women’s nominee list. The lists include the top players across all three divisions of NCAA lacrosse and highlight the 25 men’s lacrosse and 25 women’s lacrosse contenders for the 2013 Tewaaraton Award. The Tewaaraton Award annually honors the top male and top female college lacrosse player in the United States. The selection committees are made up of top collegiate coaches and are appointed annually by The Tewaaraton Foundation. Committees will make additions to these lists as the season progresses and athletes earn a spot along side these elite players. In mid-May, five men’s and five women’s finalists will be announced. These finalists were invited to Washington, D.C. for the 13th annual Tewaaraton Award Ceremony, on May 30 at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of the American Indian.
CAA Men’s Lacrosse Nominee Top 25
Austin Kaut, Penn State - Jr., G
HEADstrong Foundation Relentless Cup Game: Hofstra defeated St. Joseph’s in the inaugural HEADstrong Foundation Relentless Cup game, to benefit Nick’s House, at Ridley High School in Folsom, Pa. The contest, in memory of former Ridley H.S. and Hofstra lacrosse player Nick Colleluori, benefitted the new facility in Ridley, Pa., 0 supports and houses families in the area for treatment with blood cancers (lymphoma). Colleluori passed away in November, 2006.