5/18/10 4:19 PM
For Immediate Release
Contact: Chris Day – (617) 746-9980
Major League Lacrosse Announces Weekly Award Winners For Week 1
Matt Poskay and Alex Smith Take Home Week 1 Honors
Matt Poskay, attack for the Boston Cannons, was named the Offensive Player of the Week and Chesapeake Bayhawks’ midfielder, Alex Smith was named Defensive Player of the Week following their performances on Saturday.
After leading the Cannons to victory with four goals and an assist, Poskay said, “I was fortunate enough to find some good lanes.” Not one to take credit for his success, he gave credit to his teammates, “we did a good job clearing the ball, getting the ball into transition, and just trying to get used to each other.”
Poskay’s second goal of the game tied the score at five early in the second quarter off a rebound. “I’m not sure how high I got, probably a couple of inches. I saw a rebound and just went for it,” Poskay said. “I figured I was going to get wacked but fortunately I got my stick on it first and tried to snap it real quick from my wrist. It went in.”
Poskay isn’t just a goal scorer, he’s a leader. The team veterans, Poskay and Ryan Boyle, worked on “settling the guys down rather than getting in panic mode” late in the fourth quarter when the Outlaws scored back to back goals cutting the Cannons lead to two with 8 minutes remaining. Last season the Cannons lost seven games by one goal; needing to hold the Outlaws, they tried to keep younger players calm. Poskay’s advice for his teammates, “Let’s kind of hold that ball for that last shot and not give that up because if we don’t get a goal that’s fine, but if we give one up it’s a double negative.” Poskay iced the 16-13 victory with a goal at the 9:57 mark of the quarter.
The Cannons are happy with their first W, but Poskay stresses the team needs to build upon it. “Our goal is to get better with each game.”
Chesapeake Bayhawks’ midfielder, Alex Smith was named Defensive Player of the Week for his solid performance on face-offs against the Long Island Lizards last Saturday.
In the season opener, Smith secured 17 of 25 draws. His performance was significant in giving the Bayhawks extra possessions, keeping Lizards at only eight goals. Head Coach John Tucker spoke highly of Smith’s work against the Lizards. “He is amazing with how artistic he is,” said Tucker. “He can put the ball wherever he wants it to go—left, right or backwards.”
Drafted as the third pick in 2007, Smith was honored as the 2007 Cascade Rookie of the Year for winning 57% of 331 face-off attempts with Rochester. He improved his second season, posting 63% face-off wins and set the Single-Season Face-Off wins record with 249.
Last season was Smith’s first with the Bayhawks. He led the team in ground balls with 48 and won 217 of 368 face-off attempts, leading the MLL in face-off wins and face-off win percentage.
This week the Chesapeake Bayhawks travel to Toronto to take on the defending champions, the Toronto Nationals live on ESPN2 Saturday at 3 PM ET.
About Major League Lacrosse
Major League Lacrosse (MLL), the premiere professional outdoor lacrosse league, was founded by Jake Steinfeld and commenced play in June of 2001. The MLL’s six teams will begin the league’s 10th season of action on May 15th, 2010. The 2010 MLL All-Star Game will take place on Thursday, July 8th in Boston, MA at Harvard Stadium. The season will culminate with the MLL Championship Weekend Presented by Warrior, which will take place on Saturday and Sunday, August 21st and 22nd at Navy-Marine Corp Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, MD.