The 2013 season of the nation's professional outdoor lacrosse, Major League Lacrosse, is officially underway. As to be expected, a multitude of former standouts from the Virginia Lacrosse program hold spots on several rosters throughout the league and contribute significantly. Let's take a look who is out there...
Chesapeake Bayhawks (1-0)
The Bayhawks enter the season as the reigning champs and claim a handful of Wahoos. Goalie Kip Turner ('07) played 11 games between the pipes for Chesapeake last season and snagged 27 groundballs. Midfielder Kyle Dixon ('06) holds the league record for two point goals in his career with 50. He opened the 2013 season last weekend with a seven point performance (3 goals, 3 2pt goals, 1 assist), which earned him the top spot in league scoring so far. His hat trick of two pointers ties a league record for two pointers in a single game. Another familiar name on attack for the Bayhawks is Ben Rubeor ('08), whose eight goals in last summer's playoffs helped solidify Chesapeake's championship. He had two points in their season opener in the form of one goal and one assist. Danny Glading ('09) contributed two goals and one assist in last year's playoffs, but he is not listed as active on the Chesapeake roster this season. Chesapeake hosts Long Island this weekend.
Denver Outlaws (1-0)
Denver opened their 2013 season with a big win 21-16 win over Charlotte. Superstar finisher Chris Bocklet ('12) led the way for his team with six goals on nine shots, which earned him a spot tied for second in the current points standings behind Dixon. One particularly acrobatic goal earned him the top spot in the MLL's Top Ten Plays from week one. Check out the video here. Fellow Wahoos Ken Clausen ('10) and Mikey Thompson ('10) are also on the Denver roster. Clausen is looking to rebound from a knee injury that sidelined him last season. Denver faces the Ohio Machine this Saturday Night.
Hamilton Nationals (0-0)
Defenseman Matt Lovejoy ('12) was drafted by Hamilton in the 4th round of the 2012 MLL Draft and joins Cavalier Garrett Billings ('09) on the Nationals. Billings just finished another stellar season in the professional indoor lacrosse league, National League Lacrosse, scoring 30 goals and 70 assists on the season for the Toronto Rock. His 100 points has him currently in second place in the overall points standings. (Side note: if you haven't ever seen an indoor lacrosse game, check out the Division Finals on CBS Sports Network this weekend. It's worth it.) The Hamilton Nationals open their season this Saturday at Boston.
Ohio Machine (0-0)
Steele Stanwick ('12) is the lone Cavalier playing for the Machine. In his first MLL season, Stanwick contributed 11 goals and 17 assists in nine games. Last season was the opener for the Ohio Machine franchise, and they finished last in the league with only two wins. Their 2013 campaign kicks off this weekend against a tough Denver squad, a game which will feature two of the most recent Virginia lacrosse greats on the same field again, only this time Stanwick and Bocklet will be in opposing colors.
Boston Cannons (0-1)
Once seemingly a Virginia post-graduate squad, the Cannons still hold on to a few vestiges of Cavalier greats. Matt Poskay ('06) finished the 2012 season with 39 goals and 4 assists in 14 games for the Cannons. His 2013 campaign has already gotten him in the points column, but surprisingly the notorious goal scorer has notched only one assist. Midfielder Colin Briggs ('12) had one goal in Boston's season opener at the New York Lizards and defenseman Ryan Nizolek ('10) should also see some playing time this season. They host the Nationals this weekend.
Charlotte Hounds (0-1)
The Hounds, like the Machine, played their inaugural season in 2012, finishing a respectable 5-9. Charlotte had significant contributions from two former Wahoos. Goalie Adam Ghitelman ('11) saw action in all 14 games and had a 55% save average. Midfielder Brian Carroll ('10) finished the season with 17 goals and three assists in 13 games. Charlotte travels to face the Rochester Rattlers on Sunday.
While not immensely popular (yet), Major League Lacrosse has a growing fan base and is gaining more momentum with each season. Fans get to experience the game up close and have unprecedented and unparalleled access to their favorite players. Check out the stats, rosters, and season schedules on the MLL's official website.
For information on indoor National League Lacrosse, check here.