Golden Bears are coming off seventh straight CCC title game appearance
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (February 14, 2018) – Western New England University has been selected as the preseason favorite in the 2018 Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Coaches' Poll, which was released by the league office on Wednesday.
Western New England received five of a possible nine first place votes and finished with 77 points in the poll, edging out Endicott College, which received four first place tallies and 75 points.
The University of New England (62 points), Roger Williams (53 points) and Curry (45 points) rounded out the top-five, while Nichols (31 points), Salve Regina (29 points), Wentworth (22 points) and Gordon (11 points) took the final four spots in the poll.
After reaching the CCC championship game for the seventh consecutive season last spring, the Golden Bears have their sights set on a return to the NCAA Tournament in 2018.
Now in his 17th season at the helm of the Western New England men's lacrosse program, John Klepacki's squad returns six All-CCC performers from last season's team.
Senior Nick Beauchamp (Wilbraham, Mass.) and junior Jared Ward (Littleton, Mass.) will lead the Western New England attack after combining for 57 goals and 24 assists in 2017, while senior midfielder Justin Holl (Mount Laurel, N.J.) and junior faceoff specialist Hunter Cocks (Walden, N.Y.) will also play key roles for the Golden Bears. Senior goalie Steven Kerr (Hopkinton, Mass.), a two-time All-CCC honoree, provides experience as Western New England's last line of defense.
The Golden Bears open their 2018 campaign at Keene State on Tuesday, February 27, before hosting Lasell in their home opener on Saturday, March 3. Western New England's challenging non-conference slate also features Amherst, Nazareth, Bates, St. Lawrence and Springfield, before CCC play gets underway against Curry on March 27.