MINNEAPOLIS – After winning its second title at the 2023 MCLA National Championships presented by New Balance, Dayton has been installed as the favorite in the ’24 Upper Midwest Lacrosse Conference (UMLC) Division II Preseason Coaches Poll.
The Flyers (13-5) grabbed five out of the six first-place votes to sit in the top spot. Dayton, which was the third seed out of the three-team UMLC East division, advanced to last year’s conference title game before making its run at nationals.
In the second slot is St. Thomas (14-3). The Tommies won the UMLC crown last spring, beating Dayton during the regular season and finals, but fell to the Flyers in the national championship contest, 6-5.
St. Thomas grabbed the final first-place vote in the preseason poll.
A UMLC semifinalist and national quarterfinalist, Grand Valley State (9-4) was voted third. The Lakers were eight points behind St. Thomas, but comfortably ahead of Minn.-Duluth (5-8), which is in the fourth chair.
North Dakota State (9-5) and St. John’s (4-8) round out the six-team poll.
“For the ninth time in the 16-year history of Division II, there is a UMLC program as the defending national champion,” said conference director Derek Daehn. “D-II runs through the UMLC. To be the best, you’ve got to beat the best, and the UMLC conference tournament is as tough as it gets.”
2024 UMLC Division II Preseason Poll
|3.||Grand Valley State||23|
|5.||North Dakota State