North Carolina, the reigning NCAA Champion, has been selected as the preseason favorite in the 2017 ACC Men's Lacrosse Preseason Poll.
Head coach Joe Breschi's Tar Heels received 23 points, including four first place votes, in balloting among the ACC's five head coaches. Notre Dame followed with 23 points and was selected second. Syracuse (16) was selected third, Duke (9) fourth and Virginia (6) fifth.
The Preseason All-ACC Team features 13 student-athletes representing all five ACC teams, with four selections each from North Carolina and Notre Dame, three from Syracuse and one each from Duke and Virginia. Included on the Preseason All-ACC Team are eight returning United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association (USILA) All-Americans.
Eight of the 13 student-athletes on the Preseason All-ACC Team were also named to Inside Lacrosse's Face-Off Yearbook Division I All-America Team. The First Team included North Carolina senior defenseman Austin Pifani, Notre Dame senior midfielder Sergio Perkovic, senior defenseman Garrett Epple and senior goalie Shane Doss, and Syracuse midfielder Sergio Salcido.
Syracuse face-off specialist Ben Williams was named to the second team, while North Carolina senior attackman Luke Goldstock and Syracuse sophomore defenseman Nick Mellen were third team selections.
North Carolina also leads the way in the USILA/Nike Preseason Coaches Poll at No. 1, followed by No. 4 Notre Dame, No. 5 Syracuse, No. 7 Duke and No. 14 Virginia. The Tar Heels are ranked No. 2 in Inside Lacrosse's Preseason Top 20, while Notre Dame is fourth, Syracuse is seventh, Duke eighth and Virginia 14th.
The 2017 men's lacrosse season gets underway in early February. The ACC Men's Lacrosse Championship will be played April 28-30 at Duke's Koskinen Stadium. The semifinals are set for Friday, April 28, and the championship for Sunday, April 30. The fifth-place ACC team that does not qualify for the championship will play Penn at Koskinen Stadium on Saturday, April 29.
ACC Preseason Coaches' Poll
1. North Carolina - 23
2. Notre Dame - 21
3. Syracuse – 16
4. Duke – 9
5. Virginia – 6
Preseason All-ACC Team
A – Justin Guterding, Jr., Duke
A - Luke Goldstock, Sr., North Carolina
A – Mikey Wynne, Jr., Notre Dame
M – Michael Taliaferri, Sr., North Carolina
M - Sergio Perkovic, Sr., Notre Dame
M – Sergio Salcido, Sr., Syracuse
D - Austin Pifani, Sr., North Carolina
D – Garret Epple, Sr., Notre Dame
D – Nick Mellen, So., Syracuse
Goalkeeper – Shane Doss, Sr., Notre Dame
Face-off – Ben Williams, Sr., Syracuse
Long-stick Midfielder – Michael Howard, Sr., Virginia
Short-Stick Midfielder – Tate Jozokos, Sr., North Carolina