Championship season has arrived for men’s collegiate club teams and US Lacrosse is ready to go. The Men’s Collegiate Lacrosse Associates (MCLA) will be hosting its Division I and Division II championship tournaments, May 12-17 in Southern California, and US Lacrosse has a number of initiatives planned to support the participating players, coaches and officials.
Comprised of approximately 210 schools from coast-to-coast, the MCLA is a national organization of non-varsity college lacrosse programs, split between two divisions and 10 conferences. The top 16 teams in each division qualify for the season-ending national championships. This year’s event is being jointly hosted on the campuses of UC Irvine and Chapman University.
“US Lacrosse is excited to be a collaborating partner for this year’s MCLA Championships,” said Stephen Berger, men’s game director at US Lacrosse. “We recognize and respect the hard work that players, coaches and officials have put forth throughout the season to reach this pinnacle, and are glad to have the opportunity to support these participants throughout this week of championship competition.”
US Lacrosse will kick off the week by sponsoring a coaches’ reception on Sunday. In addition to a time of social interaction, Berger hopes to solicit input from coaches on ways that the national governing body for lacrosse can work with the MCLA to address challenges and issues faced by participating teams. The goal will be to build strategies that foster greater collaboration in coming years.
As early-round games begin at UC Irvine on Monday and Tuesday, US Lacrosse will provide a “chill zone” for players to utilize between games. This lounge area will include beverages, massage stations, relaxation zones, and raffles, while also serving as a hub for video interviews. All players will also be provided with helmet decals that feature USL’s “Compete with Class – Honor the Game” sportsmanship message. The chill zone will move to Chapman University for Thursday’s semifinal games.
US Lacrosse will also be surveying game officials for input about opportunities for greater support. As lacrosse continues to emerge as one of the nation’s fastest-growing sports, the organization understands the corresponding need for more trained and qualified officials. Feedback from current officials will help US Lacrosse form new recruiting strategies.
As co-sponsor of the Godekeraw Awards, given to the Division I and II players of the year, US Lacrosse representatives will also join players and coaches at Friday’s “Champions Dinner” to make the formal presentations.
The MCLA championship games are scheduled for Saturday, with the Division II final slated for 12 noon (PST), followed by the Division I final at 3 p.m.
For a full listing of participating teams, visit LaxMagazine.com.
Read more about the US Lacrosse “Compete with Class, Honor the Game” sportsmanship initiative, including ways you can help. You can also share examples of good sportsmanship on Twitter using hashtag #CompeteWithClass.
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