#LMRanks Best Bets: NCAA MD3 All-Americans and Awards
|Corey Elmer of Cabrini is Lacrosse Magazine's Preseason Player of the Year for DIII and also our 'best bet' to earn the Iroquois Nationals Award and Turnbull Award at season's end. (Kevin P. Tucker)|
Lacrosse is a team sport, but individual player excellence is honored every season for the few who stand out - often leaders of successful teams. Lacrosse Magazine has an eye on who the early front-runners for those various awards and honors we consider 'best bets' to have standout seasons in 2014.
These selections appear in the February 2014 issue of Lacrosse Magazine. Join US Lacrosse today to start your subscription.
Iroquois Nationals Award (Most Outstanding Player); Turnbull Award (Most Outstanding Attackman)
Corey Elmer, Cabrini
The senior attackman had the most prolific campaign of any Cabrini player in history last year when he posted his 112 points, and there's a good chance he'll match that effort.
Elmer was the focus of opposing defenses for the better part of the season, but his ability to set up his teammates as well as score allowed him to notch at least five points in 13 of the team's 19 games.
McCall Award (Most Outstanding Midfielder)
Kyle Aquin, RIT
It's not always easy to distinguish oneself amidst all the offensive talent on RIT, but Aquin managed to do it last year, capped off by his seven-goal outburst against Stevenson in the NCAA championship game. The Tigers will once again be loaded on the front end and Aquin, a junior, will once again get plenty of open looks in front of the cage.
Stiles Award (Most Outstanding Defenseman)
Callum Robinson, Stevenson
Kyle Holechek might be the emotional leader of the rugged Stevenson back line, but it's Robinson who possesses the most tools. The 6-foor-4 Aussie led the team in caused turnovers and was fourth in ground balls while possessing sublime transition skills (3g, 2a). The Mustangs allowed just 7.09 goals per outing in 2013 and with Robinson returning, they could go even lower this spring.
Kelly Award (Most Outstanding Goalie)
Alex Taylor, Salisbury
The Sea Gulls had their ups and downs last spring, but Taylor was a constant, allowing fewer than six goals per game with a 61.5 save percentage. He's got all the traditional goalie skills, but he also has a heightened sense on when to leave his crease for stray ground balls or hard-earned clears. Taylor already has two NCAA titles and could be ready to grab a third.
|Dickinson's Brian Cannon and the Red Devils are expected to once again challenge at the top of DIII. (Kevin P. Tucker)|
A Cole Bailey, Tufts, Jr.
A Brian Cannon, Dickinson, Sr.
A Corey Elmer, Cabrini, Sr.
M Kyle Aquin, RIT, Jr.
M Joe Slavik, Cortland, Sr.
M Matt Rakoczy, Cortland, So.
FO Drew Simoneau, Nazareth, Jr.
LSM Austin Campbell, Denison, Sr.
D Jon Gill, Lynchburg, Sr.
D Kyle Holechek, Stevenson, Sr.
D Callum Robinson, Stevenson, Jr.
G Alex Taylor, Salisbury, Sr.
Phil Potter, Albright
Potter is no stranger to the Lions' MAC Commonwealth foes, earning first team all-conference honors after scoring 37 goals and dishing out 43 assists. But this year the junior attackman should break onto the national scene. Albright (15-4 in 2013) will play several NCAA tournament contenders, so Potter will get a chance to shine against high-end defenses.
The Big Red was ravaged by injuries last season and lost to Ohio Wesleyan — a team it handled comfortably on the road during the regular season — in the NCAC final at home. Denison now is healthy and loaded at all the key positions to make a high seed's life miserable, just like the Big Red did back in 2009 when it stunned top-ranked Roanoke in the second round.
Like the rest of the Liberty League, the Golden Knights get lost in RIT's long shadow, but they were a whisper away from being in the NCAA tournament last year. Clarkson had RIT on the ropes in the conference tournament final before losing 10-9 in overtime. Several important pieces, like juniors Corey Herrington (19g, 27a) and J.D. St. Croix (20 CTs), return to Potsdam.
Lacrosse Magazine will continue its 2014 college lacrosse preview throughout January and into February, with team-by-team breakdowns of the top teams in NCAA Division I, II and III men's and women's lacrosse. Follow the countdown at LaxMagazine.com/LMRanks and on twitter at #LMRanks.