GILLETTE STADIUM TO HOST 2017 AND 2018 NCAA MEN’S LACROSSE CHAMPIONSHIPS
Championships return to home of the New England Patriots and New England Revolution for first time since 2012
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – The NCAA, Gillette Stadium and Harvard University today announced the 2017 and 2018 NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championships will be played at Gillette Stadium, the home of the National Football League’s New England Patriots and Major League Soccer’s New England Revolution. The Division I, II and III Men’s Lacrosse Championships will be played over Memorial Day Weekend, on May 27-29 in 2017 and on May 26-28 in 2018.
“We are honored to have earned the bid to host the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championships at Gillette Stadium in 2017 and 2018,” said Robert Kraft, chairman and CEO of The Kraft Group. “We love to celebrate championships at Gillette Stadium and are eager to host the lacrosse national championship games for the fourth and fifth times. I have a son who played lacrosse collegiately and three grandsons who I have enjoyed watching play and can speak to the tremendous growth of the game here in New England. The passion and support by fans of the game were evident when we hosted our first lacrosse championship game and set an attendance record in 2008. We look forward to hosting record-breaking crowds once again in the years ahead.”
The agreement marks the fourth and fifth times the championships will be held at Gillette Stadium, where the event has enjoyed a history of tremendous success. In 2008, Gillette Stadium set attendance records for the Division I final (48,970) and the Division II and III finals (24,317). The championships were also played in Foxborough in 2009 and 2012, attracting fans from 47 states and six international countries to the events.
The New England lacrosse community is comprised of 77 NCAA teams, 34,272 players, 809 high school teams and 86,034 registered US Lacrosse members. New England is home to the largest youth lacrosse organization (Mass Bay Youth Lacrosse League) in the United States and the Eastern Massachusetts Chapter of US Lacrosse is the largest in the country with 43,000 members.
“My family and I are thrilled to bring the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championships back to Gillette Stadium,” said Dan Kraft, president international of The Kraft Group and a former lacrosse player at Tufts University. “We look forward to working with the NCAA and all of our partners to create a great experience for the players, fans and lacrosse community.”
“Harvard is thrilled to once again partner with Gillette Stadium to serve as hosts of the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championships in 2017 and 2018,” said Bob Scalise, Harvard’s John D. Nichols ‘53 Family Director of Athletics. “We look forward to working with the NCAA and the lacrosse community to prepare for some exciting weekends of lacrosse at the upcoming NCAA Division I, II and III Championships.”
“We look forward to once again welcoming lacrosse fans from across the U.S. and across the globe to Boston and Foxborough,” said Patrick Moscaritolo, CEO of the Greater Boston Convention & Visitors Bureau. “Lacrosse fans will enjoy exploring and discovering our extraordinary cultural attractions and historical sites, in addition to watching great lacrosse at Gillette Stadium.”
Ticket, hospitality, reunion opportunities and fan activity information will be announced at a later date.
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING
The following quotes on the return of the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championships were compiled by Gillette Stadium and are for use as desired:
Chris Wojcik, Harvard University men’s lacrosse head coach – “New England will once again host the NCAA Championships and a great weekend of lacrosse. Our region’s high school and youth lacrosse communities will have the opportunity to attend the games and enjoy the festivities around Championship weekend. Hosting the three-day event will boost the continued growth of the game in New England and expose our region to the best of college lacrosse.”
Lars Tiffany, Brown University men’s lacrosse head coach – “It is exciting for New England to once again host this great event. I know the Brown University and Rhode Island lacrosse communities will be active supporters of the championships. ”
Mike Daly, Tufts University men’s lacrosse head coach – “It is an honor for New England and all of the college programs in the region to be a part of this special event. This is the biggest event in our game and to host it in our backyard is very special.Thank you to the Kraft family for hosting these lacrosse games at Gillette Stadium and continuing their commitment to sports in New England.”
Jim Murphy, Bentley University men’s lacrosse head coach – “Having seen the annual growth of the game in New England I am excited for all the youth, high school and college players to have an opportunity to watch the best of the best play in the NCAA Championships at Gillette Stadium.”
Tom Spangenberg, president of Mass Bay Youth Lacrosse League – “The Mass Bay Youth Lacrosse family, comprised of 20,000 players, 2,500 coaches and over 900 teams from 160 towns in Massachusetts truly looks forward to having this great event in our backyard again. Our families really enjoyed themselves in 2008, 2009 and 2012 and we will actively promote the games to them again in 2017 and 2018.”
Kevin McDonald, chair of the Eastern Massachusetts Chapter of US Lacrosse – “Hosting the NCAA championships in Massachusetts is a feather in the cap for so many people who have helped grow the game. The opportunity for boys and girls of all ages, along with their family members, to watch the NCAA championships will be a wonderful experience for all.”