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RPI's Sean Smith.

RPI First Big Mover in USA Lacrosse Division III Men's Top 20

February 12, 2024
Dan Arestia and Kyle Devitte
Haley Cole / RPI Athletics

The more things change, the more they remain the same.

Salisbury rolled through its first two opponents of the season, accumulating 46 goals in the process. The Gulls win, and they win pretty.

The Sea Gulls flew high enough to deposit more goals into their collective coffers than any other team so far in Division III, but for the champs, they will be focused on how Grove City got to double digits against them.

The Salisbury gap just widened a bit more. We’re looking more at a chasm than a crevasse. That being said, Christopher Newport was still firing goals into the net at the same pace it did last season, with USA Lacrosse Preseason Player of the Year Andrew Cook starting his 2024 campaign with a casual hat trick and a helper in the first three quarters of the game.

The real result of the weekend that shook the Top 20 was York falling 9-8 to RPI. The Engineers put together a collective effort to stifle York’s primary scorer from last season, Will Harnick, to a single goal on 12 shots.

The countdown to the NESCAC starting up has already begun, but there are plenty of other teams in action next week. Chief among them are Denison hosting RIT and Gettysburg battling Lynchburg. Stevens-Dickinson is an early season test for both squads, and York has a chance to rebound against Washington and Lee.


1. Salisbury, 2-0 (Prev: 1)
2. Christopher Newport, 1-0 (Prev: 2)
3. RIT, 0-0 (Prev: 3)
4. Lynchburg, 0-0 (Prev: 4)
5. Tufts, 0-0 (Prev: 5)
6. Bowdoin, 0-0 (Prev: 6)
7. Middlebury, 0-0 (Prev: 7)
8. Amherst, 0-0 (Prev: 9)
9. Union, 0-0 (Prev: 10)
10. Gettysburg, 0-0 (Prev: 11)
11. Dickinson, 0-0 (Prev: 12)
12. Wesleyan, 0-0 (Prev: 13)
13. Denison, 0-0 (Prev: 14)
14. St. Lawrence, 0-0 (Prev: 15)
15. RPI, 1-0 (Prev: NR)
16. York, 0-1 (Prev: 8)
17. Washington and Lee, 0-0 (Prev: 16)
18. Swarthmore, 0-0 (Prev: 19)
19. Muhlenberg, 0-0 (Prev: 20)
20. Hampden-Sydney, 0-1 (Prev: 17)

Also considered (alphabetical order): Babson, Cabrini, Clarkson, Grove City, Stevens, Ursinus, Western New England

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Salisbury (no change)

This is too soon, but pricing out your hotels for Championship Weekend is already in play for diehard Gulls fans.


Hampden-Sydney (-3)

A loss to a top team can happen at any point in the season, but when it comes from the opposing team doubling up the second-half scoring, that’s cause for concern. Hampden-Sydney stays in the Top 20 for now, but the leash is shorter than Lil’ Jon’s appearance during the Super Bowl Halftime Show.

York (-8)

Late turnovers cost the Spartans against RPI, as their comeback fell just one goal short. The skill and the will are there, but the execution lacked in game one.


RPI (No. 15)

Welcome to the Top 20, RPI. The Engineers were among the ranks of the considered a week ago, but a close win over York makes them a lot more than “also considered.” Luke Murphy propelled RPI into the Top 20 with a four-goal performance, including what was ultimately the game-winner with just over four minutes to go.


Grove City (was No. 18)

Grove City fell to top-ranked Salisbury, a loss surely nobody will blame the Wolverines for. But it’s a numbers game, so Grove City enters the land of the considered for at least the next week.