The University at Albany women's lacrosse team is back in the NCAA tournament.

The Great Danes (12-5) take on the University of Florida, Saturday afternoon, at 1 p.m.

The Gators (17-2) are ranked No. 1 in the 16-team field, so it will certainly take everything for UAlbany to post a victory.

Last season, the Great Danes made their first appearance in the tournament and beat Dartmouth, before losing to eventual national champion Northwestern.

Last year, UAlbany finished the regular season unbeaten, but this season it took a little while for the team to come together.

“I wanted that to happen the first day of the season and it just took a while," said UAlbany coach John Battaglino.


The Great Danes are led by sophomore Ariana Parker, a Kingston high grad. Parker has 38 goals and 15 assists on the season.

Jess Antelmi (27-25-52) and Rensselaer native Rachael Burek (35-7-42) also have led the offense along.

Burek (Columbia), Jenn Primeau (Niskayuna), Lexi Branningan (Colonie) and Allie Phelan (Bethlehem) are all former Section II standouts on the UAlbany roster.

The Great Danes will have to slow down Florida's attack, which ranks third in the country, averaging 15.95 goals per game.

“We’re definitely going to try to slow them down, but at the same time, keep up and play our game as well," said senior attacker Amanda Pollock.

For more on the UAlbany lacrosse team, check out and follow me on twitter @AndrewSantillo.


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