Middlebury’s Stone Repeats, Once Again Named Player of the Year
HADLEY, Mass. – Senior midfielder Mike Stone (Boston, Mass.) of Middlebury has been selected by the conference coaches as the 2009 NESCAC Player of the Year. It is the second year in a row that Stone has earned the league’s top honor, as he helped the Panthers to an 8-1 mark in conference play and a 13-2 overall record heading into this weekend’s NCAA Tournament action. Stone is the second individual this decade to be selected as Player of the Year in back-to-back seasons, joining Bryan Griffin of Tufts who accomplished the feat in 2003-04.
For the second time in as many seasons, Stone was unanimously chosen to the All-Conference First Team at midfield, making it three consecutive years that he has received First Team recognition. Stone is in the midst of what has proven to be his finest season with the Panthers, as his career-best 50 goals currently rank second among all players, netting five man-up tallies and four game-winners. He has also amassed a personal-high 65 points, averaging 4.33 per game, while scooping up 36 ground balls. Stone scored a career-high seven goals during Middlebury’s 18-15 win at Skidmore on April 14.
Also earning All-NESCAC First Team honors for the third-straight year was Wesleyan senior attacker Russ Follansbee (Deerfield, Mass.). Follansbee leads the Cardinals in scoring and is second in the NESCAC with a personal-best 66 points on 41 goals and 25 assists, netting 16 points during the 2009 NESCAC Men’s Lacrosse Championship to help Wesleyan secure its first conference crown. Joining Follansbee at attack on the First Team were Trinity junior Harper Cullen (Rehoboth Beach, Del.) and the Tufts tandem of senior Clem McNally (Far Hills, N.J.) and sophomore DJ Hessler (Monkton, Md.). Cullen paced the Bantams in scoring for the second consecutive year with a career-high 48 goals and six assists for 54 points. Currently the conference’s top goal scorer, McNally now owns the Jumbos’ single-season record for tallies with 51 heading into this weekend’s NCAA action, burying a league-leading seven goals in man-up situations. Hessler has broken two single-season marks at Tufts during the 2009 campaign, re-writing the Jumbo record books with a league-leading 44 assists and 86 points through 17 games. Hessler currently ranks fifth in the nation in points per game at 5.07.
Along with Stone at midfield on the All-Conference First Team were a pair of first-time honorees, senior teammate Skyler Hopkins (Easton, Md.) and Bowdoin sophomore Owen Smith (Brunswick, Maine). Second only to Stone on the Panthers roster in goals, Hopkins has 29 tallies in 15 games, five coming on man-up opportunities and three serving as game-winners. Hopkins, who owns the NESCAC championship record for goals in a tournament at 11 in 2007, has also added in 18 assists for a career-high 47 points. Smith finished 2009 scoring 19 goals and adding five assists for 24 points to rank fourth among his Polar Bear counterparts.
After being named to the Second Team as a sophomore before moving up to the First Team as a junior, Williams senior Brian Morrissey (Winchester, Mass.) garnered First Team accolades once again at long stick midfielder. Morrissey, a two-time Football First Team recipient, had two goals and an assist for three points while collecting 40 ground balls in 14 games. Also at LSM was Bowdoin senior Bryan Holden (Cape Elizabeth, Maine), who earned his first career All-NESCAC honor. Holden scooped up a team-best 68 ground balls in addition to recording two goals and an assist. At specialist was the league’s top face-off man, Colby sophomore Craig Bunker (Topsfield, Mass.). Bunker won an impressive .645 percent of his face-offs (185-207), an average of 12.3 per game. Bunker also corralled more ground balls than any other player, picking up 8.73 per game.
Wesleyan senior defender Spike Malangone (Lake Grove, N.Y.) of Wesleyan joined teammate Follansbee and Middlebury’s Stone as the only players to three-peat on the First Team. The Cardinals’ top defender, Malangone has started 16 games so far with four points on a goal and three assists along with 67 ground balls while only committing two penalties. Also on defense were Bowdoin senior Boomer Repko (New Canaan, Conn.) and Tufts junior Eytan Saperstein (Hewlett, N.Y.). Repko scored a goal and scooped 29 grounders in 16 appearances for the Polar Bears. Over 14 outings for the Jumbos, Saperstein has a goal, an assist, and 40 ground balls.
Rounding out the 2009 NESCAC All-Conference First Team was Williams senior goalkeeper Michael Gerbush (Glen Head, N.Y.). Selected to the Second Team in each of the previous two years, Gerbush played all but 3:34 of the Ephs’ 841 minutes this season, going 7-7 with an 8.52 goals against average (4th NESCAC) and a .587 save percentage (3rd).
Rookie of the Year went to Wesleyan freshman midfielder John Froats (Yorktown, N.Y.). Froats has participated in all 17 of the Cardinals’ games, tallying five goals and an assist for six points while ranking second among his teammates in ground balls with 69.
Middlebury head coach Dave Campbell was selected by his peers as NESCAC Coach of the Year. Now in his third season at the helm of the Panthers, Campbell received the conference’s coaching honor with a 13-2 overall record and a 12th-straight appearance in the NCAA Tournament. Campbell was a 2000 graduate of the college who earned All-NESCAC honors twice during his Panther playing career.
|2009 NESCAC Men's Lacrosse All-Conference Team|
| ||First Team||Institution||Yr.||Hometown|
|A||Harper Cullen||Trinity||Jr.||Rehoboth Beach, Del.|
|A||Russ Follansbee||Wesleyan||Sr.||Deerfield, Mass.|
|A||DJ Hessler||Tufts||So.||Monkton, Md.|
|A||Clem McNally||Tufts||Sr.||Far Hills, N.J.|
|M||Skyler Hopkins||Middlebury||Sr.||Easton, Md.|
|M||Owen Smith||Bowdoin||So.||Brunswick, Maine|
|M||Mike Stone||Middlebury||Sr.||Boston, Mass.|
|LSM||Bryan Holden||Bowdoin||Sr.||Cape Elizabeth, Maine|
|LSM||Brian Morrissey||Williams||Sr.||Winchester, Mass.|
|SP||Craig Bunker||Colby||So.||Topsfield, Mass.|
|D||Spike Malangone||Wesleyan||Sr.||Lake Grove, N.Y.|
|D||Boomer Repko||Bowdoin||Sr.||New Canaan, Conn.|
|D||Eytan Saperstein||Tufts||Jr.||Hewlett, N.Y.|
|GK||Michael Gerbush||Williams||Sr.||Glen Head, N.Y.|
|Second Team||Institution ||Yr.||Hometown|
|A||David Hawley||Williams||So.||New Canaan, Conn.|
|A||Whit McCarthy||Colby||Jr.||Darien, Conn.|
|A||Pete Smith||Middlebury||Jr.||Wilton, Conn.|
|M||Matthew Cranshaw||Williams||So.||Atlanta, Ga.|
|M||Mike Droesch||Tufts||Jr.||Setauket, N.Y.|
|M||Cullen Winkler||Bowdoin||Sr.||Milton, Mass.|
|LSM||Jordan Yarboro||Tufts||Sr.||Herndon, Va.|
|SP||Dave Campbell||Middlebury||Sr.||Boise, Idaho|
|D||Chris Fitzpatrick||Amherst||Sr.||Fort Salonga, N.Y.|
|D||Andrew D'Ambrosio||Williams||Jr.||Arlington, Va.|
|D||Matt Knortz||Bates||Sr.||East Granby, Conn.|
|GK||Graham Fadden||Trinity||Sr.||New Canaan, Conn.|
|Player of the Year|
|M||Mike Stone||Middlebury||Sr.||Boston, Mass.|
|Rookie of the Year|
|M||John Froats||Wesleyan||Fr.||Yorktown, N.Y.|
|Coach of the Year|