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May 10, 2004

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio State will face No. 8-seed North Carolina in the opening round of the 2004 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship, the NCAA announced Monday. The Buckeyes, who will be making their second consecutive appearance in the tournament, received the berth after winning the automatic bid for the Great Western Lacrosse League as the conference’s regular-season champion.

The No. 8-ranked Buckeyes (12-3, 5-0/1st GWLL) and No. 6-ranked Tar Heels (9-4, 2-1 ACC) will face off at 1 p.m. Saturday at Fetzer Field in Chapel Hill, N.C. Gates will open at 11:30 a.m. and tickets will be $5 for adults and $3 for students.

The winner of the game between Ohio State and North Carolina will advance to the quarterfinals to face the winner of the No. 1-seed Johns Hopkins/Providence game Saturday, May 22 in Charlottesville, Va. The semifinal and final rounds will be held May 29 and May 31 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, Md.

The Buckeyes and Tar Heels met last Saturday, with UNC posting a 12-6 win.

“It’s always an exciting opportunity to go back and play a team you just lost to,” seventh-year head coach Joe Breschi, a four-year letterwinner at UNC, said. “There’s going to be a little more fire in the guys; they’ll have that revenge factor. It’s a huge challenge. This is it – now you’re one and done. You have to play the best to be the best and North Carolina is certainly one of the them.”

“Last weekend, it wasn’t them beating us, but us beating ourselves,” Buckeye senior defenseman and 2004 co-GWLL Player of the Year, Greg Bice said. “That’s definitely a positive. We’re going to be well prepared for the weekend. Anything can happen. This would be a huge win for us.”

This marks the second time in program history Ohio State has earned a spot in the NCAA tournament. The squad lost to Maryland, 8-5, in the first round last season in College Park, Md.

“I think we are a little bit more mentally ready than last year,” senior goalie Tony Russo, 2004 co-GWLL Player of the Year, said. “Last year, we were just happy to be there, but this year, we want to go further.”

34th ANNUAL NCAA DIVISION I MEN’S LACROSSE CHAMPIONSHIP

DATES/SITES/PAIRINGS:

FIRST ROUND
Saturday, May 15
Providence (9-7) at #1 Johns Hopkins (11-1)
Ohio State (12-3) at #8 North Carolina (9-4)
Army (10-4) at #3 Maryland (12-2)
Rutgers (8-5) at #6 Princeton (9-3)

Sunday, May 16
Towson (11-4) at #5 Georgetown (10-3)
Albany (10-5) at #4 Syracuse (11-2)
Hobart (9-6) at #7 Cornell (8-4)
Pennsylvania (7-6) at #2 Navy (12-2)

QUARTERFINALS:
Saturday, May 22, at Charlottesville, Va. (Virginia)
Johns Hopkins/Providence winner vs. North Carolina/Ohio State winner
Maryland/Army winner vs. Princeton/Rutgers winner

Sunday, May 23, at Ithaca, N.Y. (Cornell)
Georgetown/Towson winner vs. Syracuse/Albany winner
Cornell/Hobart winner vs. Navy/Pennsylvania winner

SEMIFINALS:
Saturday, May 29, at M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, Md.
11:30 or 2 p.m.

CHAMPIONSHIP GAME:
Monday, May 31, at M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, Md.
2:30 p.m.