LAX: Navy the top seed in Patriot Tourney

Navy earned the #1 seed, and more importantly, homefield advantage in the Patriot Tourney, despite being inactive on Friday night. The 8-4 Midshipmen finished tied with Colgate at the top of the standings with identical 6-2 records after Colgate beat Army 8-5 in their final regular season game. The Mids claimed the top seed with their 7-6 road win at Colgate on March 21 giving them the tiebreaker.

The other team which could have snatched the #1 seed from the Mids grasp on Friday night was Loyola Maryland. The Greyhounds traveled to Bucknell knowing that a win over the Bison would be enough to give them the top spot as they held the tie-breaker over Navy. In a hugely entertaining game, however, Loyola fell to a 10-9 overtime defeat. With the top of the Patriot League being so competitive in 2015 this saw the Greyhounds slip all the way to the #4 seed with their 5-3 league record and they will now host Army in the first round of the tournament.

The Mids will now have a first round bye, along with Colgate, while the other teams face off on Tuesday night with the higher seeded school hosting the first round match-ups. Navy will enter the tournament at the semifinal stage, with those games being played at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium at 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Friday night. The title game will happen on Saturday at 1 p.m. at the same venue.

As Navy will play the lowest seeded first round winner, the only school out of the running for the Mids to face on Friday is #3 Bucknell. If the games go to seed, which would be a minor surprise given that these four teams are so equally matched, Navy would face #4 Loyola in their semifinal. The other two teams in the tournament, both of which are very capable of springing an upset, are #5 Army West Point and #6 Lehigh.

Using the regular season as a guide Navy would probably want to avoid a Loyola team who gave them by far their worst loss of the season in a 17-7 rout earlier this month. The Mids game against Lehigh in March was a crazy back and forth affair which Navy won 13-12, but which could have gone either way. Navy played their final regular season game against Army West Point, beating the Black Knights 10-7 with a furious fourth quarter comeback.

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