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Navy in danger of falling out of contention for Patriot League tournament

Navy’s 11-3 loss to No. 16 Colgate in the first game of the Konica Minolta Face-Off Classic at M&T; Bank Stadium last Saturday did not officially eliminate the Midshipmen from the Patriot League tournament.But a setback to Lehigh this Saturday just might.

A loss to the Mountain Hawks (6-4) would drop Navy (3-6) to 1-4 in the conference. Three teams -- No. 6 Bucknell, Colgate and Lehigh -- are 2-0 in the Patriot League, Army is 1-1 and Holy Cross is 1-2.

There are a number of tiebreaker scenarios that will become clearer after this weekend’s games, but the conclusion that can be drawn is that the Midshipmen would do themselves a huge favor by beating the Mountain Hawks.

Coach Rick Sowell dismissed the notion that the team is feeling backed into a corner.

“When you put it that way, I supposed that would be fair. But to be honest with you, we really haven’t talked about it,” he said Thursday afternoon. “We’re just trying to play good lacrosse. We’re focusing on trying to put things together and play the game we feel it’s supposed to be played. That’s really where we’ve been focusing our attention, playing good lacrosse. Hopefully, the results will take care of themselves.”

Sowell conceded that the mood isn’t “great” as Navy is mired in a three-game losing skid and a slide of six setbacks in the last seven contests. But he also said that the players are concentrating on the task at hand.

“I wouldn’t say panic or desperation,” Sowell said of the team’s attitude. “It is what it is. We didn’t play well last week, and we’re just focusing on trying to play better. There’s no sense in panic or desperation. That’s not where we’re at.”

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