BENESCH NAMED ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

Snider, Iannucci, Shewchuk, Gajic & McGlone on All-Rookie Team

05/09/2007

Ryan Benesch, who was 13th in league scoring with 33 goals, was named the 2007 NLL Rookie of the Year.
The naming of the 2007 National Lacrosse League season award winners continues today with the announcement of the 2007 Rookie of the Year and the 2007 All-Rookie Team. Toronto Rock forward Ryan Benesch has won the Rookie of the Year Award. Joining Benesch on the All-Rookie Team is; Geoff Snider and Athan Iannucci of the Philadelphia Wings, Jamie Shewchuk and Nenad Gajic of the Colorado Mammoth and Bill McGlone of the Chicago Shamrox.

2007 National Lacrosse League All-Rookie Team
(No particular order)

Rookie of the Year - Ryan Benesch (Toronto Rock) was the first overall selection in the 2006 NLL Entry Draft in September, taken by the San Jose Stealth. Before the start of the season however, he was traded to the Toronto Rock, in a deal that also sent former league MVP Colin Doyle to the Stealth from Toronto. A highly touted rookie coming into the season, Benesch was thrust into the spotlight and was left with the responsibility of filling the void left by Doyle.

Under the heavy pressure, the 22-year-old from Kitchener, Ontario went on to lead all rookies with 33 goals and 58 points, while playing 15 games for the Rock. His 25 assists was the second best rookie total. Benesch's 33 goals scored in 2007 ranked 13th in the entire league and second on the Rock. He also scored ten power play goals and collected 64 loose balls this season.

During the 2007 season Benesch won Rookie of the Month honors in March and was named Rookie of the Week three times while helping the Rock to a 6-10 record and to the team's ninth straight playoff berth.

Geoff Snider (Philadelphia Wings) earns 2007 NLL All-Rookie Team honors after leading the league with a faceoff win percentage of 75% (201 of 268) in 2007. The rookie Transition Player out of the University of Denver finished second in the league with 180 loose balls this season and also scored 14 goals and added 17 assists for 31 points. He was the January Rookie of the Month and also earned Transition Player of the Week honors in Week #5 this season. Snider helped the Philadelphia Wings to a 6-10 record, scoring two game winning goals during the season.

Bill McGlone (Chicago Shamrox) helped lead the expansion Chicago Shamrox to a 6-10 record in their inaugural season. McGlone finished second for Chicago this season with 22 goals and he added 18 assists for 40 points. The rookie played every game for Chicago this season and led the team with five short handed goals. McGlone was a fourth round draft pick (41st overall) out of the University of Maryland. He was the Week #2 Rookie of the Week.

Nenad Gajic (Colorado Mammoth) earned 2007 All-Rookie Team honors after helping lead the Colorado Mammoth to a Western Division best 12-4 record. Gajic played every game for the Mammoth this season and scored 37 points on 13 goals and 24 assists. He also finished second on the Mammoth with 102 loose balls. The rookie transition player scored one power-play goal and two short handed goals in 2007. Gajic earned February Rookie of the Month honors and won the league's Transition Player of the Week Award in Week #8 this season.

Athan Iannucci (Philadelphia Wings) earns All-Rookie Team Honors after finishing second amongst all rookies this season with 30 goals. The Rookie out of Hofstra University also tallied 24 assists for a combined 54 points in 2007. Playing 15 games for Philadelphia this season, Iannucci scored ten power play goals and finished eleventh in the NLL with 123 loose balls. He was a two time winner of the league's Rookie of the Week Award this season, winning in both Week #5 and Week #15.

Jamie Shewchuk (Colorado Mammoth) earns 2007 NLL All-Rookie Team honors after a 53-point season. In 15 games, Shewchuk scored 27 goals and 27 assists, good for fourth in scoring on the Colorado Mammoth offense. Shewchuk scored 13 power-play goals and scooped 69 loose balls as well. He was named Rookie of the Week after a three goal performance in Week 5 against Edmonton. Shewchuk helped the Mammoth to a 12-4 record and a West Division title. The award announcements will continue on Wednesday when the league will announce the First and Second Team All-Pros.

The league will announce its season award winners leading up to the 2007 National Lacrosse League Championship presented by Edge Active Care on May 12th. The game will be played at Jobing.com Arena in Glendale, Arizona at 4PM Eastern/1PM Pacific. The Rochester Knighthawks and the Arizona Sting will meet in the championship game. The game will be broadcast live on VERSUS in the US. In Canada, Sportsnet will air the game in all regions in a same-day tape delay broadcast at 7PM Eastern/4PM Pacific.

2007 NLL Season Awards
Monday 4/30

Sportsmanship Award
Tracey Kelusky, Calgary Roughnecks

Tuesday 5/1
Defensive Player of the Year (for a defenseman, non-goaltender)
Ryan Cousins, Minnesota Swarm

Transition Player of the Year
Steve Toll, Rochester Knighthawks

Wednesday 5/2
Progressive Goaltender of the Year
Anthony Cosmo, San Jose Stealth

Thursday 5/3
"Les Bartley Award" for Head Coach of the Year
Ed Comeau, Rochester Knighthawks

Friday 5/4
General Manager of the Year
Marty O'Neill, Minnesota Swarm

Monday 5/7
Executive of the Year
Dave Zygaj, Buffalo Bandits
Executive of the Year
Dave Zygaj, Buffalo Bandits

"The Tom Borrelli Award" for Writer of the Year - Ty Pilson, Calgary Sun

Ticket Sales Executive of the Year - Paul Brosseau, Edmonton Rush
Marketing Executive of the Year - Tom Garrity, Minnesota Swarm
Operations Executive of the Year - Barb Kozuh, Arizona Sting
Sponsorships Executive of the Year - Yvonne Fox, Toronto Rock
Public Relations Executive of the Year - Pauline Hughes, Edmonton Rush
Equipment Manager of the Year - Ryan Gage, Rochester Knighthawks
Athletic Trainer of the Year - Dave Murray, Toronto Rock

Tuesday 5/8
Rookie of the Year and All-Rookie Team
Rookie of the Year - Ryan Benesch, Toronto Rock

All-Rookie Team
Ryan Benesch, Toronto Rock
Geoff Snider, Philadelphia Wings
Athan Iannucci, Philadelphia Wings
Jamie Shewchuk, Colorado Mammoth
Bill McGlone, Chicago Shamrox
Nenad Gajic, Colorado Mammoth

Wednesday 5/9
First and Second All-Pro Teams

Thursday 5/10
Dodge Nitro Most Valuable Player

Saturday 5/12
2007 National Lacrosse League Championship presented Edge Active Care