No. 2 seed, bye at stake when St. Mary's hosts York on Saturday

Win against visiting Spartans would give Seahawks one of top two seeds and first-round bye in upcoming Capital Athletic Conference tournament

April 17, 2013|By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun

The disappointment of St. Mary’s 15-4 loss to No. 5 Salisbury, the reigning Division III national champion, last Saturday has given way to the excitement surrounding the team’s upcoming home contest against Capital Athletic Conference foe York this Saturday.

The Seahawks (9-5 overall and 4-1 in the conference) are battling the Spartans (12-3, 4-1) for the No. 2 seed in the CAC tournament, which begins next Wednesday. A victory would give either side a first-round bye in the six-team field and at least one home game.

“We know what’s at stake Saturday,” St. Mary’s coach Chris Hasbrouck said Wednesday morning. “We feel that for us, there’s not a lot of pressure. If we win the game, we get a bye and we get to host a game. If we don’t go out there and we don’t perform and we don’t win the game, we’re home Wednesday and then probably at York on Saturday. So we’re feeling really good right now. I think if we play to our potential – which we are close to doing – I think we have the potential to beat everybody on our schedule.”

Since 2002, the Seahawks have racked up a 13-2 record against York, but the Spartans have won the last two meetings in St. Mary’s City (7-5 on March 28, 2009 and 7-4 on March 30, 2011). Hasbrouck wasn’t sure which track record would show up Saturday.

“I don’t know. Every year is a new year, and the way it’s actually been going in the more recent history, they’ve had success against us here and we’ve had success against them there,” he said. “That’s the history I’d like to change. We’re prepared, they’re prepared, and there’s a lot at stake. It should be a high-level game. I’d like to think that with two very good teams getting ready to play, I think a little bit of that home-field advantage gets taken away. We’re glad we’re home though.”

St. Mary’s is 5-5 against opponents with a winning record at the time of their respective games, and York defeated Franklin & Marshall, 9-7, on March 16. (The Diplomats are ranked No. 15 in the latest United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association poll.)

But Hasbrouck is confident that the Seahawks will be ready to tangle with the Spartans.

“Our schedule has prepared us for this,” he said. “If you want to play in big games, this is a big game. We have no doubt that York is going to come in and play extremely hard. They’ve had a hell of a season, and we’ll be prepared.”

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