Coming into the first ever Professional Lacrosse League draft few knew what to expect when it came to the players that would be selected. The four members of the league showed that they were going big or going home, drafting some of the biggest young names in American lacrosse.
Charlotte had the first overall selection and used the pick on Sam Bradman of Salisbury. Bradman scored 99 points this season with the Seagulls, helping them to their second straight Division III title. He was Long Island’s second round pick in the MLL Draft, but decided to join the LXM pro tour instead.
The names didn’t get any smaller, as Steele Stanwick went second overall to the Reading Rockets. Stanwick, who was also selected second overall in the MLL draft this season, had an outstanding collegiate career at Virginia. Stanwick was a three time All-American and two time ACC Player of the Year. He won the Tewaaraton Trophy his Junior year as the nation’s most outstanding player. This season he won the Jack Turnbull Award given to the top attackman. He was drafted into the MLL by the Ohio Machine and has scored a point in all six of him games (8 goals and 12 assists).
CJ Costabile was the first defenseman to go, being drafted third overall by New Jersey. Constabile played his college ball at Duke, serving as a d-pole middie. He was drafted fifth overall in the MLL Draft this year by the Chesapeake Bayhawks, but was traded to the Lizards before he had finished the NCAA tournament. In seven games Constabile has three goals and 18 ground balls for Long Island.
The Bullies first selection was a tad more under the radar in former Limestone scorer Shayne Jackson. He has helped lead the successful Division II program all the way to the Championship this season, only to lose to Dowling by one goal. He scored 19 goals and 19 assists for the Saints last season and is a former Tewaaraton Trophy watch list member. He was drafted into the MLL by the Denver Outlaws but has not played this season.
Past the first round the draft was filled with players who have enjoyed success in the MLL this summer. UVA product Chris BockletÂ was taken ninth overall by New Jersey. With the Denver Outlaws this summer he has scored 11 goals and 2 assists in the four games he’s played in. Selected in the same round was Eric Lusby, who made a name for himself in the post season for Loyola. He was drafted by the Charlotte Hounds of the MLL, and now he’s been drafted by the Charlotte Copperheads as well.
Two of Long Island’s great rookie scorers, Ryan Young and Tom Palasek, were selected by the New Jersey Rascals last night. Palasek was taken in the fourth round (14th overall) and Young was selected in the fifth round (19th overall). Â Palasek has 19 goals and 4 assists while Young has 11 goals and 6 assists this season.
Two players were selected that many expect to be taken very high in the upcoming NLL draft, Kiel Matisz and Joe Reseterits. Both players have indoor experience in addition to their play in the MLL. Matisz currently plays in the MSL with Brooklin and has scored 17 goals and 21 assists this season. He also plays for the Ohio Machine of the MLL, where he has scored 6 goals and 1 assist. Resetarits plays for Brampton in the MSL and has scored 18 goals and 10 assists this season. In the MLL he has scored 7 goals and 3 assists for the Hamilton Nationals. With both players considered sure fire picks for the NLL draft it will be interesting to see if they will suit up in the PLL.
Overall the draft was full of players who have MLL experience or are on MLL rosters. Aside from the players previously named, this list also includes Robert Rotanz (Rascals, 5th), Colin Briggs (Rascals, 8th), Billy Eisenreich (Reading, 12th), Justin Turri (Copperheads, 16th), Gerry Reilly (Copperheads, 17th), Matt Cannone (Reading, 18th), Brett Schmidt (Reading, 23rd), Kevin Vaughan (Rascals, 25th), Joe Cummings (Reading, 29th), Roman Lao-Gosney (Rascals, 35th), and Cameron Lao-Gosney (Rascals, 40th).
It will be interesting to see what players sign with the teams that selected them. The teams picked the best graduates in the country, which is very risky for a league just starting its first season. Whether or not a lot of these big name players will be joining the league will soon be seen. If the league even lands half of the MLL talents that have been drafted, the quality of play this fall should be excellent. However it is not known how many of the players are actually interested in joining the PLL.
The two new additions to the league have now acquired the rights to players and are closer to shaping their rosters. More news is to come out of the league this week, as the schedule is expected today and New Jersey is holding a press conference tomorrow. If you wish to see the entire draft, click here.