Bears Name 2009 Lacrosse Captains/ 2008 Team Awards Announced

Oct. 9, 2008

Providence, RI - Four seniors will provide leadership for the Brown men's lacrosse team with an eye on defending its Ivy League Championship. Seniors Jordan Burke (Potomac, MD), Todd Faiella (Marshfield, MA), Kyle Hollingsworth (Darien, CT) and Jack Walsh (Chevy Chase, MD) have been named captains of the 2009 Brown men's lacrosse team in an announcement made by head coach Lars Tiffany at Brown's annual team banquet on September 27th.

"Love of teammates and team provides the fundamental seed for leadership," said Tiffany. "Such complete, unflinching devotion to the program, and to each other, is found inside the four men who will lead Brown Lacrosse in 2009. These men have already defined themselves as outstanding competitors on the field. But the true reasons Jack, Todd, Jordan and Kyle were elected as captains by their teammates are their passion and absolute commitment to the greatness of Brown Lacrosse."

Burke, a second team All-American, the Ivy League Player of the Year and a finalist for the Tewaarton Award as the Nation's top player, led the nation with an outstanding save percentage of .674, and ranked second in the nation with a 6.43 goals against average. Brown's first All-American since 2003, Burke was a unanimous first team All-Ivy selection and earned All-New England honors. A COE/Business Economics concentrator, Burke was also named Brown's Male Athlete of the Year, earning the Fritz Pollard '19 Trophy.

Faiella, a Modern American History concentrator, has proven to be a major spark for the Bears' defense. He joined the team midway through the 2007 season as a goalie and helped the Bears beat Hartford. In 2008, Faiella played a key role as a defenseman for Brown defense that allowed just 6.79 goals per game, fourth best in the nation.

Hollingsworth, Brown's second leading scorer, ranked in the Top 10 in Ivy League scoring with 2.43 points per game, scoring 21 goals and handing out 13 assists. An Economics concentrator, Hollingsworth scored four goals against Cornell and Air Force, and registered six points against Air Force and Delaware.

Walsh was Brown's top assist man in 2008, distributing 14 assists. He also added 13 goals to finish as Brown's third leading scorer. The Urban Studies concentrator registered a hat-trick against Penn and Vermont, both times scoring three goals, while adding an assist.

In addition to naming the team captains for 2009, the 2008 Ivy League Champion Brown lacrosse team announced its award winners:

Most Valuable Offensive Player The consummate lacrosse player, this man has exploded onto the Ivy League and National scene in his first two years at Brown. He has made a huge impact on the offensive end of the field, playing primarily as an attackman but also running out of the midfield. He led our program in goals (30) and points (37) in 2008. He may have led the nation in Man-Up Goals with a staggering 12. Earning Ivy League Player of the Week Honors in early-March, he later finished the year with First Team All-Ivy honors. He performed well under pressure, making big plays for Brown time and time again, highlighted by his kamikaze dodge to the goal with 20 seconds left in a tie ball game versus Yale that resulted in him drawing 3-4 Eli defenders, feeding the ball, and the game winning goal by Kyle Hollingsworth. Thomas serves as a role model to the other men with his commitment to being not only a great offensive player, but also as a borderline convict as a riding attackman. The 2008 winner of the Most Valuable Offensive Player is our environmental studies concentrator Thomas Muldoon `10.

Vincent Marinelli Award The Vincent Marinelli Award is an annual freshman award, distributed to the "pup" who best exemplifies the competitive spirit and commitment to the quality of life that Vinnie himself demonstrated as a freshman at Brown in 1987. As soon as he stepped on campus last Fall, he was doing extra workouts and grabbing the ball bucket for more shots on his own. Regardless of the media hype that he had come to college with, he was (and is) committed to putting in the extra effort to be the best he can be. This man made a huge impact on the offensive end of the field. He finished tied for second on the team with goals scored (21), which ranks him 3rd in the record books for goals scored by a Brown Lacrosse freshman. The biggest goals came in Brown's first win over Princeton in 13 years, as he scored our team's final two goals. Winner of the Ivy League Rookie of the Week 3 times in 2008, he has clearly established himself as a force to be reckoned with in the future. This year's winner of the Vincent Marinelli Award goes to a man who capped his first year of college with a Summer in British Columbia with Team USA, scoring 20 goals and earning a gold medal along with Peter Fallon. The winner of the 2008 Vincent Marinelli Award is Andrew Feinberg `11.

Most Valuable Defensive Player The 2008 Defensive MVP was an impregnable force. He was given the top match-up time and time again, being asked to defend the opponent's best offensive threat. And he never failed in his assignment. This defenseman kept some of the most prolific scorers in the nation frustrated and scoreless most of the contest. Delaware's Curtis Dixson, Penn's Craig Andrejewski, and Dartmouth's Ari Sussman each only tallied one goal against Brown, and all of those were with less than 7 minutes left in the game. His match-ups versus Princeton and Yale were held scoreless. Several others had the same experience. While many awards inexplicably escaped his honor for most of his career, he did earn First Team All-Ivy Honors in 2008 as well as Academic All-American. The 2008 Defensive MVP goes to the man better known as the Wrangler. Congratulations to the graduated Economics concentrator Reed Deluca `08.

Jim Tepper Award Established in 1991, this award is given in honor of Jimmy Tepper to the most improved player of the program, the player who turned it around the most after struggling early in his career. This year's recipient made a major statement his junior year as he became an established offensive threat at midfield and a man-up player. It all started in the Fall of 2007, when he blew his teammates away, along with the coaching staff, with his newfound aggressiveness and with outstanding fitness. He wanted to make an impact now and he committed himself to making Brown Lacrosse better. He grew as a player, scoring 12 points including big goals in wins over Yale and Penn. But more so, he grew as a man. This year's Jimmy Tepper Most Improved Player is history concentrator Brady Williams `09.

The Alumni Award Presented annually to the lacrosse player who through sportsmanship, performance and influence contributed the most to the sport at Brown, our winner this year was a model of consistency. Rarely phased by anything, this stoic man led by example on the field. While always ready to smash an opponent into next week, either with a vicious body blow or a chop with the Talon lumber, he kept an even keel and his poise throughout the battles. He was dependable - relied upon to guard the opponent's strongest and biggest attackman, this defenseman never gave ground. He kept us solid on defense from start to finish. Off the field, he led the charge with several community events and kept us continuously going to Fox Point to see the 3rd grade classroom of Mrs. DeMillo. This year's Alumni Award winner and double concentrator in Economics and COE (organizational tract) is tri-captain Brian Sharnick `08.

The Richard Q. Whelan Jr, Unsung Hero Award Re-named in 2005, the award is given in memory to the Brown lacrosse player who best exemplifies Ricky's unselfish play, dedication to the program and overall commitment to excellence. This defensive midfielder is truly one of the toughest young men Brown Lacrosse has seen in quite some time. He has never backed down from a challenge, whether on the football field, in the goal, or at the faceoff X. He battled through a torn hip labrum and later-to-be diagnosed Double Hernia during the 2008 season. Despite the physical limitations, this man lead the way in the Ivy League Championship game against Princeton, taking almost every faceoff and literally grinding and willing this team to a victory and title. A captain in this, his senior year, few are as inspirational. His passion and work ethic are crystal clear. Undeniable in his pursuits, the 2008 Ricky Whelan Unsung Hero Award goes to history concentrator Todd Faiella `09.

The Cliff Stevenson Award Presented annually to the most valuable player of the Brown Lacrosse team in honor of long-time Brown lacrosse and soccer coach Cliff Stevenson, this year's choice stood above many great players and performances. During the 2008 season, there was a great deal of senior leadership provided by our recently departed group. It was this man however whose superb play spearheaded the Championship Year. Serving as the backbone of the defense and team, he amazed us all by consistently competing at a stratospheric level. His focus was always dead on - he literally shut the door in many games. Stellar performances had opposing coaches befuddled and scratching their heads. The first ever lacrosse winner of the Brown Athletic Department's Fritz Pollard Award, he and his teammates were recognized by the University for their outstanding season. The accolades continued to pour in, including first team All-Ivy and All-New England honors, Ivy League Player of the Year, and 2nd Team All-American recognition - the first All-American for Brown since Michael Levin in 2004. The 2008 Cliff Stevenson Award Winner is COE concentrator Jordan Burke `09.

The recently named Dom Starsia coaches' award is given by the coaching staff to the player who best represents the spirit of Brown lacrosse year in and year out. To be honest, this was not a difficult decision this year, once we decided we would choose two winners from the Defensive Midfield position - aka "the character position". These men have done everything that has been asked of them. One started his Brown career as an attackman, began his junior year as a midfielder, ran with a long stick for two weeks and was then asked to give it back as we finally found his true position as a short stick defensive midfielder. The other man, while never straying far from his true position as a D-Middie, rarely passed up an opportunity to shoot, including a goal versus Dartmouth, tying him with his linemate who had a lefty finish versus Lehigh. The two of them combined to form a unique tandem - "the perfect ying and yang for a D-Midde Duo". They were continuously tested and dodged by opposing offenses: these two warriors denied these attacks, and then counter-attacked. They played the game with massive hearts, and they played it to win. The coaches' award recipients this year go to recent COE graduates Mike Cummins and tri-captain Brian Asher `08.