After 11 seasons in Major League Lacrosse, Machine defenseman and team captain Greg Bice has formally announced his retirement.
“There were a lot of things that went into my decision, but the number one thing for me was my family,” Bice said. “My wife has always been really supportive throughout the years and would continue to be supportive moving forward. Having my son grow up, I want to make sure that I am there for him and that I’m spending quality time with my family.”
“Greg has embodied the type of player we are looking for when building our roster,” Machine Vice President & Head Coach Bear Davis said. “Moving forward, our team is going to miss the leadership and experience Greg brought to the room. He excels on the field and is an even better person in the locker room and in the community. We will always consider him a shining example of what a Machine player should embody.”
Bice joined the Machine in 2011 after being acquired in a trade with the Rochester Rattlers. The Texas native played his college lacrosse at Ohio State, so joining the Machine was a natural home coming.
“I think for every athlete, and you see it with LeBron coming back to Cleveland, and obviously I’m not close to that, every athlete has the desire to play in front of friends and family and the home town crowd,” Bice said. “For me to be able to end my career these last three seasons in front of my home town fans and people that have had a huge influence on me over my lifetime, it was a pretty special thing.”
In 11 seasons in MLL, Bice played in 97 regular season games and four playoff games. He collected 226 groundballs, scored 14 goals, two 2-point goals, dished out eight assists and finished with 24 points. One the greatest contribution a defenseman can make is his ability to stay on the field and Bice finished all but one of his 11 seasons with fewer than four penalty minutes.
Over the past three seasons, only three players have played more games in a Machine uniform than Bice. His ability to play consistent man-to-man defense has contributed to his longevity in MLL. Bice was a four-time All-Star (2007, 2010-12) and a two-time recipient of the New Balance Sportsman of the Year Award (2007, 2011). Additionally, Bice has served as a team captain five times.
“Having played with Greg for one season at Ohio State, three season with the Machine and having coached with him for more than five years, Greg has been a friend, a captain and a role model to me,” Machine midfielder Eric O’Brien said. “Experience is a big part of being successful in MLL and Greg can make you comfortable with that.”
Bice was drafted by the Philadelphia Barrage in 2004 following an outstanding college career at Ohio State. The 2004 Great Western Lacrosse League Player of the Year, Bice was a two-time All-American and led the Buckeyes to the 2003 and 2004 NCAA Tournament.
“Greg has been such an important part of growing the Ohio lacrosse community for so long that it’s fitting he was one of the first-ever players on the Machine’s roster and one of our first-ever captains,” Machine President & General Manager John Algie said. “His experience and leadership was so critical to building the Machine from an expansion team into a legitimate contender and we’ll certainly miss his on-field presence.”
Following two seasons with the Barrage in which he played one game, Bice was selected by the Los Angeles Riptide with the first overall pick in the 2006 MLL Supplemental Draft. After three successful seasons in Los Angeles, Bice played two seasons in Chicago, followed by a season in Rochester and three seasons in Ohio to close out his career.
Although Bice has retired from playing, giving up lacrosse is not in his plans. Bice is the co-owner of Resolute Lacrosse, a club program in Columbus. Additionally, he will serve as head coach of the Columbus Academy Boys Lacrosse team this coming season and will remain involved with Lacrosse the Nations.
“Lacrosse is a major part of my life and it will continue to be so,” Bice said. “It’s just one facet of the game, being a player, that I’m hanging up.”