CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia head men’s lacrosse coach Dom Starsia announced that midfielder Colin Briggs, defenseman Chris Clements, midfielder Matt Kugler and attackman Steele Stanwick have been selected as team captains for the 2012 campaign.
“I am very pleased to announce our captains for the 2011-2012 academic year,” said Starsia. “I have been blessed throughout a long career to have worked closely with some outstanding young men who have served in this capacity. The value of true leadership was never more evident than in this past 2011 National Championship season. Being a captain is neither a popularity contest nor a simple assignment but Colin, Chris, Matt and Steele are clearly in the mold of those who have stood strongly in the recent past. Their selection is the first indication of the sharp focus and intent for this 2012 team.”
Briggs, a senior from Narragansett, R.I., was named the Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Men’s Lacrosse Championship after scoring five goals in UVa’s 9-7 triumph over Maryland in the final. Briggs was a second-team selection on the USILA All-America team after tallying 29 goals and 12 assists in 2011. The All-ACC selection was third on the team with 41 points.
Clements, a senior from Baltimore, Md., moved to defense in January from a short-stick defensive midfielder position and also saw time as a long-stick midfielder. Clements appeared in all 18 games in 2011, starting 14 of them. He picked up 46 ground balls and caused 13 turnovers. Clements had three ground balls and two crucial caused turnovers against Maryland in the NCAA finals, helping the Cavaliers to the victory.
Kugler, a senior from Fairfax Station, Va., was a key piece that ran on UVa’s second midfield in 2011. He finished with five goals and two assists in 17 games played in 2011. Kugler had important goals for the Cavaliers in the first round overtime win against Bucknell and again in the semifinal round against Denver.
Stanwick, a senior from Baltimore, Md., is a captain for a second season in a row after also winning the Tewaaraton Trophy, awarded to the top collegiate lacrosse player in the country. Stanwick helped set the table for the nation’s No. 3 offense. The ACC Player of the Year and USILA first-team All-American, Stanwick contributed 32 goals and 38 assists to rank No. 4 nationally in points per game. His 38 assists ranked No. 3 nationally. Stanwick had nine goals and 12 assists for 21 points in the 2011 NCAA Tournament, four away from matching an NCAA Tournament record set by Eamon McEneaney in 1987.
“We are off to a good start and the potential for outstanding leadership that accompanies today’s announcement moves us smartly in the direction of a meaningful finish,” said Starsia.