Automatic Qualifiers and At-Large Teams

The Division III Women's Lacrosse Championship is a 32-team, single-elimination tournament selected from three pools.  Teams must play a minimum of eight NCAA varsity games to be eligible for the tournament, and games tied after regulation play must be decided in overtime.

There are 21 berths (Pool A) allocated to conferences that quality for automatic qualification (AQ):
Colonial States
Commonwealth Coast
Empire 8
Great Northeast
Liberty League
Little East
North Atlantic
North Coast
North Eastern
Skyline Conference
USA South
See conferences for members and current standings.

Five berths (Pool B) are reserved for true independents and teams from conferences that do not receive an AQ.  Six berths (Pool C) are reserved for teams remaining from AQ conferences that did not win their AQ berth.

Each time is assigned to one of five geographic evaluation regions (with a number of exceptions granted that place teams in their natural geographic regions).  There are no set minimum or maximum berths from one region. 

Metro: Centennial, CSAC, Commonwealth, Skyline plus Pool B (17)

New England: Commonweath Coast, GNAC, Little East, MASCAC, NAC, NESCAC, NEWMAC plus Pool B (6)

New York: Empire 8, Liberty, NEAC, SUNYAC plus Pool B (2)

South Atlantic: Captial, ODAC, USA South plus Pool B (3)

West: MIAA, Midwest, North Coast plus Pool B (27)

Primary Criteria for Selecting At-Large Teams

Selections for Pool B (5) and Pool C (6) berths emphasize in-region competition.  The following primary criteria are evaluated, but not in priority order:
Secondary Criteria for Selecting At-Large Teams

If the evaluation of the primary criteria does not result in a decision by the committee, the following secondary criteria will be evaluated, and some include results versus opponents from other classifications (i.e., provisional teams, NAIA, and the other two NCAA divisions).

  • Out-of-region head-to-head competition
  • Overall Division III win-loss percentage
  • Results vs. common non-Division III opponents
  • Results vs. Division III teams ranked in other regions
  • Overall win-loss percentage
  • Results vs. common out-of-region opponents
  • Overall Division III strength of schedule
  • End-of-season performance
To be considered for Pool B or Pool C selection, an institution must play at least 50% of its competition against Division III in-region opponents.  Input is also provided by regional advisory committees.  However, coaches' or other polls or rankings are not used by the selection committee.

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