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SPARKS, Md. — Salisbury capped a perfect season with the program’s fourth national championship, and they start 2022 as the team to beat, earning the No. 1 spot in the Nike/USA Lacrosse Division III Women’s Preseason Top 20.

Salisbury, which has made it to the NCAA semifinals each of the past three completed seasons, returns Lydia McNulty for a fifth year, as well as other top players such as attacker Erin Scannell, midfielder Lauren Valenti and defender Caroline McKenna.

Tufts, the No. 2 team, suffered its only loss of 2021 in the national championship game, falling by one goal to Salisbury. The Jumbos will be tough to beat this season with USA Lacrosse Magazine Preseason Player of the Year Molly Laliberty in goal and several other key players returning.

Franklin & Marshall, Middlebury and St. John Fisher round out the Top 5.

Continue below for the rest of the Top 20.


1. Salisbury
2. Tufts
3. Franklin & Marshall
4. Middlebury
5. St. John Fisher
6. William Smith
7. Ithaca
8. Washington and Lee
9. Messiah
10. Gettysburg
11. TCNJ
12. Denison
13. Catholic
14. SUNY Cortland
15. SUNY Brockport
16. York
17. Wesleyan
18. Colby
19. Montclair State
20. Christopher Newport

Also considered (alphabetical order): Amherst, Bowdoin, Mary Washington, Roanoke, St. Mary’s, SUNY Geneseo