By: Marisa Ingemi
The 2016 National Lacrosse League draft saw one of its most college heavy group in years. Because of the overall lack of depth in the draft, teams were seeking star collegiate players more than ever with limited indoor lacrosse experience. Because the Patriot League is one of the top conferences in lacrosse, it saw three
Loyola’s Zach Herreweyers was a surprise first round pick to the Colorado Mammoth who traded into the first round late last week. Herreweyers was a star with Loyola. He hadn’t played box lacrosse in nearly two years for the Brampton Excelsiors organization, so for him to move into the first round was somewhat of a surprise.
Herreweyers was one of the top players in the conference for the best few seasons, and it was expected he’d be an early round selection. He picked up 43 points for Loyola in his senior season, and 51 in the year previous. Herreweyers is ninth all time in Loyola history with 103 goals and he was a Patrot League all-conference player in 2015. He was the first Greyhound to be selected in the first round since 2001, when Gavin Prout was the first overall pick.
Leo Stouros, a defender out of Colgate, landed with the Georgia Swarm in the second round at #17 overall, and he could be viewed as one of the biggest steals of the draft. Stouros started every game for the Raiders this past season where he was a team captain. He won a Minto Cup in 2014 with Six Nations, and the indoor game is where he has left his mark despite an excellent career in the Patriot League.
Herreweyers was not the only Greyhound to be drafted, as his teammate Tyler Albrecht was selected by the Rochester Knighthawks in the fourth round. Albrecht was a two-way midfielder for Loyola where he scored 67 career points over four years.
Historically, the Patriot League has produced a lot of NLL talent. In 2015, the Saskatchewan Rush drafted Dan Taylor out of Lehigh, one of the Mountain Hawks’ all time best scorers. 2013 saw Reid Acton of Loyola drafted to the Swarm along with Josh Hawkins, also of the Greyhounds, going to Vancouver.
Next year four Terriers would be eligible for the NLL draft, but the only one with any experience is forward/attackman Ryan Johnston, who has won a Minto Cup with the Six Nations Arrows. Ryan Fournier of Loyola is the only other Patriot League player scheduled to be a draft option.