Gators jump to program-best No. 6 in IWLCA rankings

The Florida Gators lacrosse team, riding a 10-game win streak, has been ranked No. 6, the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association (IWLCA) announced today. This is the highest ranking for the Gators in program history.

The Orange and Blue have outscored opponents, 159-78, since the Gators’ overtime loss to No. 3 North Carolina, its only defeat of the season. Tewaaraton watch list honoree Kitty Cullen (Rockville, Md.) has already set a new program record for goals in a single season with 49.

Florida is ranked fifth in the nation in overall points scored and win percentage, sixth in scoring margin, seventh in scoring offense and draw controls and ninth in scoring defense. Individually, sophomore midfielder Cullen leads the nation in goals scored overall and goals per game, while coming in fifth in points overall. Sophomore goalkeeper Mikey Meagher (Liverpool, N.Y.) is sixth in the country in goals-against average with 7.38.

The Gators own a 9-0 home record and will be hitting the road to take on No. 16 Penn State on Saturday, April 2nd. This is Florida’s first venture outside the Sunshine State since the Orange and Blue’s lone loss of the 2011 season.

The top three schools, Maryland, Northwestern, and Duke all sit 1-2-3 in each voter’s ranking this week, keeping these three institutions as a solid block on top of the rankings. Penn State returns to the top-20, coming in at No. 16, as the rest of the poll shuffles after games from last week. Florida continues to climb, moving to a program-high No. 6 as the Gators are in their second year of competition.

The ACC again claims a record five schools, with four residing in the top seven. Maryland leads things off at No. 1, and Duke holds steady at No. 3 while North Carolina (No. 4) and Virginia (No. 7) both rise one spot; Boston College remains at No. 19.

The American Lacrosse Conference now has four schools in the rankings. Two of the ALC schools sit in the top six as Northwestern holds at No. 2 and Florida climbs to No. 6. Vanderbilt moves up two to sit at No. 13 while Penn State rejoins the rankings at No. 16.

The Big East and the Ivy Group both claim three schools each. Loyola leads the Big East at No. 5, up one spot from last week, while Syracuse (No. 14) and Georgetown (No. 17) both drop a couple notches. Penn is the highest-ranked Ivy at No. 8 while Princeton (No. 12) and Dartmouth (No. 18) both remain the same from the previous poll.

The CAA has two schools, with James Madison holding steady at No. 10 and William & Mary moving up one spot to No. 15.

Stanford from the MPSF drops to No. 9, while Albany from the America East continued to rise, moving up again, this time landing at No. 11. Massachusetts from the Atlantic 10 held at No. 20.

On Wednesday March 30, No. 11 Albany travels to No. 19 Boston College. On Friday, the No. 1 Terps host the No. 8 Quakers. Saturday sees a trio of games, starting with the No. 2 Wildcats hosting the No. 3 Blue Devils in Evanston. No. 6 Florida travels to ALC-rival and poll newcomer, No. 16 Penn State and No. 7 Virginia goes to No. 19 Boston College in an ACC matchup.

The next weekly poll will be released on April 3.