Rookies shined in games last weekend, highlighted by eight points from Florida’s Lyle Thompson and six goals from Ohio’s Jimmy Bitter. Here’s the complete rundown.
Thompson was the star rookie (and player) in Major League Lacrosse last weekend. On Friday, he tallied seven goals and one assist in Florida’s dominant 19-9 win over Charlotte, the second straight win for the suddenly surging Launch. Thompson’s teammate, and Cornell rookie, Connor Buczek also continued his strong season with four points behind a two-point goal and two assists. Loyola’s Pat Frazier contributed five groundballs, Casey Ikeda of Maryland had four groundballs and Nicky Galasso of Syracuse played in his second-career game. On the other bench was Charlotte’s star rookie Joey Sankey, who was held relatively in check with just one point (a goal), his lowest offensive output in his MLL career so far. Duke rookie Will Haus also scored for the Hounds
Last weekend began with New York’s 15-13 win at Chesapeake. The only rookie to suit up for the Lizards was Hakeem Lecky of Syracuse. The midfielder was playing in his second Major League Lacrosse game. Meanwhile, Chesapeake rookie Matt Donovan scored a goal as the Cornell product now has five goals and one assist through five games this season. Also suiting up for the Bayhawks were rookies Chris Hipps (Duke) and Patrick Harbeson (Virginia).
Saturday’s Fourth of July holiday featured a pair of games, highlighted by Boston’s impressive 22-9 win at Denver. Johns Hopkins’ Wells Stanwick was the standout rookie, scoring two goals and adding an assist as part of the Cannons’ offensive outburst. John Glesener out of Army West Point also added an assist. On the other side, Denver’s Mike Bocklet continues to be one of the stories of the summer. Added to the Outlaws’ roster after an open tryout, the former Fairfield standout dished an assist and is up to 28 points (20 goals, eight assists) in nine games this season. Rookie Jeremy Noble out of Denver also dished an assist while another former Pioneer Erik Adamson saw action, as did Salisbury alum Johnny Rodriguez, who played 15 minutes in goal.
A pair of Rochester rookies each scored two goals to help lead the Rattlers to a 16-15 win at Ohio. Kevin Rice (Syracuse) finished with two goals and two assists while Jack Near (Notre Dame) scored twice. Rice’s former Syracuse teammate and fellow rookie Randy Staats tallied one goal and two assists. Johns Hopkins alum Mike Poppleton, playing in his first MLL season, was a stellar 25-for-33 facing off to help his Rattlers control possession. Bitter, a North Carolina alum, broke out with a career-high six goals for the Ohio Machine, which included three goals in each half. Other rookies to play were Bitter’s UNC teammate Jake Bailey and Matt Bertrams of Albany.