Dec. 18, 2008

Courtesy of Salisbury

BALTIMORE - For the sixth straight year Face-Off Yearbook, produced by Inside Lacrosse, has picked Salisbury University as the preseason No. 1 team in NCAA Division III men's lacrosse.

Face-Off Yearbook started in 1994 and over the 16 years SU has never been ranked lower then fourth in the top 20 preseason rankings. It has been picked No. 1 a record nine times.

Salisbury was also selected by Face-Off Yearbook as the top team in the Capital Athletic Conference (CAC). The Sea Gulls have won every CAC title (14) since joining the conference in 1995.

The annual preview guide for men's college lacrosse also named four Sea Gulls, out of 90 players, to one of the four preseason Division III All-American teams.

Salisbury senior midfielder Kylor Berkman leads the way as he was picked as the publication's preseason Division III Player and Midfielder of the Year. He was the lone Sea Gull on the preseason All-American first team. Junior midfielder Mike Von Kamecke was on the third team while junior long-stick midfielder Connor Burgasser and senior defenseman Kevin Maynard were honorable mention selections. The four Sea Gulls were also named to the preseason All-CAC team as picked by Face-Off Yearbook.

Berkman, the reigning Division III Player of the Year and two-time Division III Midfielder of the Year, embarks on his senior season at SU. The publication also tabbed Berkman as the fifth best player in all of college lacrosse as he was the only Division III player selected to their Player of the Year Watch List. The two-time first-team All-American led the Gulls in assists (49) last season and was second in points (83) and fourth in goals (34). The Salisbury, Md., native was named the Most Outstanding Player of the 2008 NCAA Division III national championship game as he scored five goals and two assists in the 19-13 win over No. 2 SUNY Cortland in Foxborough, Mass. Berkman's biggest goal came a week before in the NCAA semifinals as he fired home the double-overtime game-winner against No. 3 Gettysburg College to send Salisbury to its 11th national championship game.

Von Kamecke finished fourth in scoring in '08 for the Gulls with 53 points (32 goals, 21 assists) and scooped 18 ground balls.  The Winter Park, Fla., native scored two game-winning goals in '08 including the national championship game and a 13-12 victory over Villa Julie College (now Stevenson University).  Von Kamecke was selected as an All-American honorable mention and All-CAC second team honoree last season.

Burgasser saw action in all 22 games last year for the Sea Gulls where he caused a team-high 50 turnovers. The long-pole also added one goal and one assists for the maroon and gold to go with his 76 ground balls. The Mendon, N.Y., native earned a spot on the All-CAC first team in '08.

Maynard started all 22 games for Salisbury in '08, his first season as a starter, and helped to anchor one of the top defenses in the nation. The Salisbury, Md., native scooped up 31 ground balls and caused 22 turnovers for the Sea Gulls. Maynard was named to the All-CAC second team in '08.

Salisbury finished a record breaking season in 2008 as the Sea Gulls went a perfect 22-0 en route to the program's eighth national championship, fifth in six years. The Sea Gulls continued several unbelievable win streaks in ‘08 and will enter the '09 season with the nation's longest current win streak (45 games), the longest home winning streak (74 games), a 77-0 regular-season win streak and a perfect 100-0 mark in conference play .

Salisbury is not the only team from the CAC to be ranked as Stevenson checks in at No. 5 in the preseason national poll. The Mustangs are also picked to finish second in the CAC behind Salisbury. There are 10 players from the CAC represented on this year's preseason All-American teams including three first-team selections, one on the second-team, two on the third-team and four honorable mentions.

Salisbury's '09 schedule features four teams ranked in the Face-Off Yearbook preseason top 20, all of which are in the Top 10. The four teams are No. 10 Lynchburg (Feb. 21 on the road), No. 2 Gettysburg (Mar. 28 at home), No. 5 Stevenson (Apr. 4 at home) and No. 8 Washington (Md.) College (Apr. 25 on the road).

The yearbook is currently available on newsstands and can be ordered for $9.95 plus shipping and handling through the Inside Lacrosse Web site http://www.insidelacrosse.com/.

2009 Face-Off Yearbook Division III Preseason Top 20

  1. SALISBURY
  2. Gettysburg
  3. Middlebury
  4. SUNY Cortland
  5. Stevenson
  6. Cabrini
  7. Roanoke
  8. Washington (Md.)
  9. Endicott
  10. Lynchburg
  11. Stevens Institute
  12. Wesleyan
  13. Ithaca
  14. Haverford
  15. Nazareth
  16. Bowdoin
  17. Western New England
  18. St. Lawrence
  19. Denison
  20. Geneseo

Teams in italic are Salisbury opponents in '09