To say this year's Patriot League lacrosse season was insane is an understatement. In fact, here are the only three patriot-related things that can are wackier than this year's Patriot League season:
- The scene in The Patriot when Mel Gibson kills that Redcoat with an ax.
- That Patriots' Day party you went to when you visited your friend at one of Boston's 35 colleges before catching the Boston Marathon and/or Red Sox game.
- New England Patriots wide receiver Rob Gronkowski.
Heading into the season, we figured this conference was Loyola's to lose with maybe Lehigh or Army competing for the conference crown. We were wrong. Loyola and Lehigh did progress to the tournament semifinals, crashing out in the quarterfinal round. The Mountain Hawks made the tournament despite finishing in a three-way tie for sixth thanks to some last day chaos. Second-year Boston University was nationally ranked, as was Holy Cross (twice). In the end, the conference''s members beat the living crap out of each other, even though Navy made it out of the mess with only two losses. Although this battle royale took almost the whole conference out of the NCAA Tournament at-large discussion (Navy has a slight chance at doing so), this season was a glorious free for all and we loved every minute of it.
This weekend the Patriot League will, once and for all, bring some order to itself by determining its conference champion. The tournament started Tuesday with the quarterfinals, which saw Bucknell and Army progress to Annapolis. Navy will play Army in a huge rivalry game in one semifinal while Bucknell will take on Colgate in the other. By the time Sunday afternoon ends, we'll know who finally survived this . . . thing.
THE FACEOFF is here with a special conference tournament edition to get you all set for the fun in Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium this weekend: