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SPARKS, Md. — History was made last season, as Lindenwood claimed its first national championship and became the first NCAA champion from outside of the Eastern Time Zone in the 20-year history of the Division II women’s lacrosse championship.

If our 2022 Nike/USA Lacrosse Division II Women’s Preseason Top 20 holds up, coach Jack Cribbins’ Lions will create more history this season by becoming the first back-to-back champion since Adelphi achieved the feat in 2015.

The Lions are the popular choice among the coaches who provided input on our preseason ranking, universally tabbed as No. 1 to start the year. While there’s no shortage of legitimate challengers, it may be advisable to muzzle the Lions early.

If Lindenwood meets the expectations and advances to the final weekend of play, it will have the advantage of playing the final four on the home turf of Hunter Stadium. Lindenwood is the pre-determined host site for the 2022 semifinals and championship game.

It’s also important to note that last year, due to COVID-19 factors, the NCAA reduced the Division II championship tournament from 16 teams to 12. This year, the postseason field has been restored to 16, with four teams to be chosen from each of the four regions.

Here’s our preseason ranking.


1. Lindenwood
2. Indianapolis
3. Le Moyne
4. Queens
5. West Chester
6. East Stroudsburg
7. Roberts Wesleyan
8. Rollins
9. Florida Southern
10. Regis
11. Limestone
12. Seton Hill
13. Tampa
14. Mercy
15. Grand Valley State
16. Bentley
17. Adelphi
18. Mt. Olive
19. Pace
20. St. Anselm

Also considered (alphabetical order): Assumption, Belmont Abbey, Bloomsburg, Davenport, McKendree, Mercyhurst