By Natalie Johnson | 6/10/14 11:00 AM
BOSTON (June 10, 2014) -Major League Lacrosse, the premier professional outdoor lacrosse league, announced the Team MLL roster for the 2014 MLL All-Star Game today. The 24 players selected will compete against Team USA in the MLL All-Star Game on Thursday, June 26, at 7:30 p.m. at Historic Harvard Stadium in Boston, MA.
The team will be coached by Chesapeake Bayhawks head coach David Cottle. New York Lizards head coach Joe Spallina will serve as his assistant.
Team MLL features the best players from the league’s eight teams, including nine-time All-Star and Boston Cannons defenseman Brodie Merrill and last year’s Warrior Most Valuable Player, Florida’s Kevin Crowley. The team also features ten players who will be making their first appearance in the All-Star Game.
Joining Merrill on the field will be two of his Boston teammates, defenseman Kyle Sweeney and goalkeeper Jordan Burke. Sweeney, who will be making his seventh All-Star Game appearance, has 12 ground balls on the year and is part of the league’s best scoring defense, which has allowed just 59 goals this year. That defensive unit relies on Burke, who has been one of the best goalies in the MLL this year, with an exceptional 9.89 goals against average.
MLL’s newest club, the Florida Launch, has two 2014 All-Stars: Crowley and veteran goalie Brett Queener. Queener is currently tied for the league lead with 86 saves, and holds a .589 save percentage in 2014, which places him second among all MLL goalies. This will be Queener’s fifth All-Star appearance in the past six years.
The last two Number 1 selections in the MLL Collegiate draft, Peter Baum (2013) and Tom Schreiber (2014), will be competing in the game for Team MLL. The pair of Ohio Machine midfielders have combined for 21 goals through the first six weeks of the 2014 MLL season. The Machine will also be represented by Logan Schuss, who recently set a club record with eight points in a single game.
The Denver Outlaws, the league’s top team in the standings, have four players who were selected for Team MLL. Anthony Kelly, who holds the MLL all-time record for face off wins, is having another outstanding year at the X, going 85-for-155 through Week 6. Jeremy Sieverts, who will be making his third consecutive All-Star appearance, has scored an MLL-best four 2-point goals this season. Two Outlaws, Eric Law and Michael Simon, will be making their first All-Star appearance.
Last year’s MLL Champion, the Chesapeake Bayhawks, will be represented by midfielder Joe Walters and attackman Drew Westervelt. Walters and Westervelt will be two of the most experienced players on the field, as Walters will be making his seventh All-Star Game appearance, and Westervelt will be making his fifth.
The Charlotte Hounds are tied for the lead with four All-Stars this year. Attackman Matt Danowski will be making his sixth All-Star Game appearance, although it will be his first since 2011. He currently leads the Hounds with 25 shots on goal. Danowski will be joined by three Hounds defensemen: Kevin Drew, Ryan Flanagan, and Brett Schmidt.
A pair of outstanding midfielders from the New York Lizards will be appearing in the All-Star Game this year. Steve DeNapoli, who was also named an All-Star in 2012, will take the field along with his teammate Kevin Unterstein. DeNapoli has 11 ground balls this year, while Unterstein has recorded 1 goal and 6 GBs in 2014.
There will also be four Rochester Rattlers appearing in the game for Team MLL. Faceoff specialist John Ortolani, who is second in the league with 38 ground balls this season, will be making his first All-Star appearance. Michael Manley, who has already been named MLL Warrior Defensive Player of the Week twice in 2014, will be taking the field for Team MLL, as will midfielder Justin Turri and long-stick midfielder Joel White.
The 2014 MLL All-Star Game, which will feature Team MLL vs. Team USA, will take place on Thursday, June 26, at 7:30 p.m. at Historic Harvard Stadium in Boston, MA. Tickets are now on sale, and can be purchased at ticketmaster.com or by calling 617-746-9933.
MLL All-Star Team by position
Goalies:Jordan Burke (Boston), Brett Queener (Florida)
Face Off: Anthony Kelly (Denver), John Ortolani (Rochester)
Defensemen: Ryan Flanagan (Charlotte), Michael Manley (Rochester), Brett Schmidt (Charlotte), Kyle Sweeney (Boston)
Defensive Midfielders:Steve DeNapoli (New York), Kevin Drew (Charlotte), Kevin Unterstein (New York)
Long Stick Midfielders: Brodie Merrill (Boston), Michael Simon (Denver), Joel White (Rochester)
Midfielders: Peter Baum (Ohio), Kevin Crowley (Florida), Tom Schreiber (Ohio), Jeremy Sieverts (Denver), Justin Turri (Rochester), Joe Walters (Chesapeake)
Attackmen: Matt Danowski (Charlotte), Eric Law (Denver), Logan Schuss (Ohio), Drew Westervelt (Chesapeake)