Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Evans, Corbeil, O'Connor, Chiefs goalies and coaches earn MSL awards

Shawn Evans is MSL's scoring champion and MVP for 2013
(Photo: Tim Prothero, VintageLax)

Shawn Evans has added the Jim Murphy Award for the league's most valuable player to the Bucko McDonald award he earned as Major Series Lacrosse's leading scorer, MSL has announced. Evans won the scoring title by putting up 7 points in the last game of the season to overtake Shawn Williams. Evans wound up with 29 goals and 77 assists for 106 points while Williams finished with 27 goals and 776 assists for 103 points. Williams played all 20 of Brooklin's games; Evans managed to pull out the scoring title despite missing one game while on a brief honeymoon after getting married during the season.

The Brampton Excelsiors, despite suffering their first losing season since 1990, took home a pair of league honours for individual players. Chris Corbeil was named the winner of the Merv McKenzie Award for top defensive player. Corbeil had an outstanding season in his own right and was a tremendous leader and role model for the group of young defenders with whom he played. He scored 4 goals and 10 assists while playing in 18 of the Excelsiors' 20 games, all the while being matched up against opponents' top offensive threats.

Ethan O'Connor won the Gene Dopp award as top rookie in the closest voting of any of the awards. O'Connor showed huge improvement throughout the season in his role as a transition player. He displayed solid defence and was the team's top-scoring player out of the back end with 9 goals and 7 assists for 16 points in the 18 games he played. O'Connor's speed and varied skill set make him a strong candidate to be a first-round pick in this September's National Lacrosse League draft.

The regular-season champion Six Nations Chiefs took home the other pair of MSL awards. Their goaltending trio of Evan Kirk, Brandon Miller and Brenner Jacobs won the Harry Lumley Award given to the goalies of the team that allows the fewest goals during the season. The Chiefs goalies allowed 157 goals (7.85 per game), just two fewer than the Brooklin Redmen's duo of Zach Higgins and Steve Fryer.

The Chiefs were also honoured for their great season (finishing in first place by 7 points with a 16-3-1 record) as their coaches were named the top staff in the league. Head Coach Rich Kilgour and assistants Mike Lines, Duane Jacobs and Mouse Henry led a team that scored the most goals in the league, allowed the fewest and won the season series against four of the league's other five teams while splitting against the fifth.

Award winners were determined by statistics or by voting among MSL's teams. They will be presented to the winners during the MSL finals.