Three Nationals Named to All-MLL Team
The awards keep coming for Hamilton Nationals' Kevin Crowley with his selection to the All-MLL Team. Crowley was one of three Nationals named to the team, which also included defensemen Brodie Merrill and Tucker Durkin.
Crowley earned his first All-MLL nod after winning the Warrior MVP and Brine Offensive Player of the Year. This season, the third-year pro notched career highs in goals, assists and points. The New Westminster, BC native set a team record for points in a season with 55, which was tied for the league lead. Crowley was also second in the MLL with 38 goals, which matched his goal total from the first two seasons of his career.
Additionally, he scored a career-best three two-pointers to tie for the team lead. Earlier in the season, Crowley was named the MVP of the 2013 MLL All-Star Game. If that wasn't enough, the Nationals attackman recorded a point in a team record 29 straight regular season games.
Durkin also earned his first selection to the All-MLL team. The rookie from Johns Hopkins played in 11 games in 2013, twice earning MLL Defensive Player of the Week honors. The former Blue Jay was also selected to try out for the 2014 U.S. Men's National Team. During his college career, Durkin played four seasons at Johns Hopkins. In 2013, he earned his third straight All-American honor, receiving Second Team honors as a sophomore and First Team honors in 2012. The native of Huntington, Pa. was a Tewaaraton nominee as a senior and became just the fourth player in Johns Hopkins history, and the eighth player in college lacrosse history, to twice win the William C. Schmeisser Award as the nation's top defensive player.
"It's great to get recognized. With guys like Brodie and Brett (Queener), they make it real easy for a young defenseman like me to play my game," said Durkin. "It's nice to get that award, but we still have a lot of work to do."
The final All-MLL Team member is no stranger to winning league awards. Merrill is a six-time Warrior Defensive Player of the Year and an eight-time All-MLL Team member. The Orangeville, Ontario native holds the MLL record with 711 career ground balls while scoring 45 goals, including three two-point markers, and chipping in 75 assists in 104 career games. In 2013, Merrill led the Nationals with 91 ground balls, which was fourth best in the MLL. He also finished tied for the league-lead in points among defensemen with 11. The 31-year-old, who broke into the MLL in 2005, admitted that awards at this stage of his career are very meaningful.
"It becomes tougher balancing your personal life and continuing to train and prepare. It definitely becomes more of a challenge as you get older," said Merrill, who is a husband, father and lacrosse instructor. "You learn to appreciate the time you get to play in this league at a high level."
On Saturday, August 24th, the Nationals will battle the defending champion Chesapeake Bayhawks in the Major League Lacrosse Semifinals. The game from PPL Park in the Philadelphia Area will be broadcast live on ESPN2 at 4:00 p.m.
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Major League Lacrosse Stories from August 23, 2013
- Three Nationals Named to All-MLL Team - Hamilton Nationals
- 2013 MLL All-Pro Team Announced - MLL
- Bayhawks Seek Third Title in Four Years at Championship Weekend - Chesapeake Bayhawks
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