With one weekend left to determine who gets to play in the first Ivy League men’s lacrosse tournament, there are two things we know for certain. Princeton is in, and Penn is out. Everything else seems shrouded in mystery.
This is what we know for sure: with a win, Cornell, Brown, Harvard, and Yale guarantee themselves a spot in the tournament. The Big Red, Bears, and Bulldogs could lose and possibly still get in. Dartmouth needs a win and some help to clinch a spot.
1. CORNELL BEATS PRINCETON, HARVARD BEATS YALE, DARTMOUTH BEATS BROWN
The Big Red claims a share of the Ivy crown by beating the Tigers, and gets the privilege of hosting the tournament due to its head-to-head win over Princeton. Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, and Brown would be in a four-way tie for third place. The Crimson and Bulldogs would advance with their 2-1 head-to-head records (Harvard would have beaten Dartmouth and Yale, Yale would have beaten Brown and Dartmouth). The Bears and Big Green go home.
2. CORNELL BEATS PRINCETON, HARVARD BEATS YALE, BROWN BEATS DARTMOUTH
Cornell, Princeton, and Brown share the Ivy title three ways. The tournament goes to Providence, the Big Red becomes the No. 2 seed, and the Tigers are No. 3. The Crimson and Bulldogs would be tied for fourth, with Harvard getting the final spot due to its head-to-head win.
3. PRINCETON BEATS CORNELL, HARVARD BEATS YALE, BROWN BEATS DARTMOUTH
The Tigers win the title outright and the Bears grab the No. 2 seed at 4-2. Cornell, Yale, and Harvard would be in a three-way tie for third. The Big Red, with its 2-0 record over those opponents, gets the No. 3 seed. The Crimson becomes No. 4 with a head-to-head win over the Bulldogs.
4. PRINCETON BEATS CORNELL, HARVARD BEATS YALE, DARTMOUTH BEATS BROWN
All hell breaks loose. Princeton still wins its outright title, but there would be a five-way tie for second place, with the quintet of contenders all having 3-3 league records and 2-2 head-to-head records. In that scenario, the next tiebreaker is record against the top seed. Harvard’s the only team to have beaten the Tigers this season, and therefore it becomes the No. 2 seed. Among the remaining four teams, Dartmouth and Yale sneak in, leaving the Big Red and Bears at home.
In the end, for the Crimson it comes down to what the squad does on the field next Saturday. All of these scenarios predict a Harvard victory, while a loss to the No. 11 Bulldogs sends the Crimson packing. We’ll have to see what shakes out five days from now in New Haven.