The following is a press release from the West Chester University Athletic Department.
West Chester University, a perennial power in Division II, was ranked third in the preseason poll released by Lacrosse Magazine recently. Senior attacker Tori Dugan was also named the NCAA Division II preseason player of the year by the Magazine.
West Chester (16-4) returns eight starters, including All-American Tori Dugan (West Chester, Pa./Rustin) at attack, from their national runner up squad in 2012, which dropped the Division II title game, 17-16, to LIU-Post last May. Dugan was named the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Player of the Year in 2012. She finished seventh in the nation in points (94), 10th in assists (40) and fifth in draw controls (134), helping the Golden Rams to that berth in the NCAA championship game.
Dugan capped a spectacular campaign with five goals in the national championship game loss to LIU- Post. She finished the year with 54 goals while setting a school record with her 134 draw controls. Dugan’s 94 points were the most in a single season by a Golden Rams player since Steph Kienle set the single-season Division II record with 143 points in 2008.
Also returning to the Golden Rams lineup in 2013 will be fellow first team All-American Theresa Giunta (West Chester, Pa./Henderson). Giunta was part of a defense that ranked ninth in the country, allowing fewer than 10 goals per game to its opponents. She scored 17 goals and collected four assists for a total of 21 points from her defensive midfield position. The local product ranked second on the team in both ground balls (45) and draw controls (57). She was also a first team All-PSAC and first team All-South Region selection in 2012.
Defending national champion LIU-Post was voted preseason No. 1 in the national poll with fellow Long Island power Adelphi checking in at No. 2. Behind the Golden Rams in the fourth slot is Florida power Rollins with LeMoyne rounding out the preseason top five.
West Chester opens its 2013 campaign at home at Vonnie Gros Field on Thursday, March 7 against Fort Lewis (Colo.) at 3 p.m.
Lacrosse Magazine’s NCAA Division II women’s preseason rankings:
NCAA Division II Women
3. West Chester
8. Lock Haven
10. New Haven
Preseason Player of the Year: Tori Dugan, West Chester, Sr. A