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May 28, 2006

Philadelphia, Pa. – The top-ranked Virginia men’s lacrosse team leads the way with eight players named to the STX/USILA All-America team announced during the semifinals of the NCAA Tournament Saturday (May 27). The eight selections ties the record for most Cavaliers selected in one season and the first time since 2003.

Defenseman Michael Culver, midfielder Kyle Dixon and attackman Matt Ward were all named to the first-team, while midfielder Matt Poskay, attackman Ben Rubeor and midfielder Drew Thompson were second-team selections. Goalie Kip Turner and defenseman Ricky Smith were named to the third-team.

Dixon and Ward move up to the first team this season after being named second-team All-Americans last year. Culver was a third-team choice last year and joins Dixon and Ward on the first team.

Dixon is one of the top midfielders in the country and is the only midfielder among the five finalists for the Tewaaraton Trophy as the nation’s top player. He is currently sixth on the team in scoring with a career-high 38 points. His 18 goals, as well as his 20 assists, are also career bests. His 20 assists are tied for the second-most by a midfielder in school history. A rare middie who both scores goals and sets up his teammates, Dixon is only one of four midfielders in Atlantic Coast Conference history with 50 career goals and 50 career assists.

Ward is another of the five finalists for the Tewaaraton Trophy. A team captain for the second year in a row, he is the clear team leader. He leads the team in scoring for the third year in a row with 62 points, the most by a Cavalier in six years. He has scored at least one goal in 53 of 61 games in his career and ranks fourth in school history with 134 career goals. This season he leads the team with 37 goals and 25 assists. and has been the team’s leading goal scorer on seven occasions.

One of the top defensemen in the college game, Culver continues the tradition of outstanding defensive players at Virginia. His selection marks the 13th consecutive season a UVa defenseman has been named to one of the top-three teams. Assigned to the opposition’s best attackman, he has held some of the most dangerous scorers in check all season as Virginia allows fewer than eight goals per game.

The remaining five Cavaliers are all first-time All-America honorees.

Poskay is the nation’s leading midfield scorer with 36 goals this season. He has been the team’s leading scorer in five games this spring and has tied Pete Eldredge (1972) for the most goals in a season by a UVa middie.

The left-handed Rubeor gives the offense an added dimension and capably complements Ward. He is second behind Ward with 54 points and 22 assists, while his 32 goals are third-most on the team. Along with Ward, he gives the offense its first pair of 30 goal-20 assist attackmen since 1999.

Thompson has blossomed this season into a terrific all-around midfielder. He plays offense, defense and is one of the team’s primary face off specialists. He has tallied 17 goals and added 20 assists for a career-high 37 points this season. In addition he has won 56 percent of his face offs.

Smith is one of the leading up-and-coming defensemen this season, his second as a starter. Frequently overshadowed by Culver, he has been instrumental in Virginia’s outstanding defensive play throughout the season. He leads the team’s defensemen with 50 ground balls, tops among ACC longstickmen.

Turner has been excellent all season and is among the national leaders with a 7.14 goals allowed average and a 58.0 save percentage. He had a season-high 15 saves in a dominating 15-5 win over Maryland in early April and has made at least 10 saves in eight games this year.

The complete team is listed below.

First Team

Attack: Sean Morris (Massachusetts), Chris Unterstein (Hofstra), Joe Walters (Maryland), Matt Ward (Virginia)

Midfield: Joe Boulukos (Cornell), Kyle Dixon (Virginia), Bill McGlone (Maryland), Paul Rabil (Johns Hopkins)

Defense: Michael Culver (Virginia), Brett Moyer (Hofstra), Jack Reid (Massachusetts)

Goalie: Alex Hewit (Princeton)

Second Team

Attack: Jon Birsner (Navy), Brett Bucktooth (Syracuse), Athan Iannucci (Hofstra), Ben Rubeor (Virginia)

Midfield: John Keysor (Hofstra), Billy Looney (Navy), Matt Poskay (Virginia), Max Seibald (Cornell), Drew Thompson (Virginia)

Defense: Daniel Cocoziello (Princeton), Dan Driscoll (Notre Dame), Reyn Garnett (Georgetown), Steve Whittenberg (Maryland)

Goalie: Matt McMonagle (Cornell)

Third Team

Attack: Kevin Huntley (Johns Hopkins), Brendan Mundorf (UMBC), Joe Yevoli (Syracuse)

Midfield: Peter Cannon (Georgetown), Brian Crockett (Syracuse), Greg Peyser (Johns Hopkins), Geoff Snider (Denver)

Defense: Zach Jungers (Princeton), Stephen McElduff (North Carolina), Ray Megill (Maryland), Ricky Smith (Virginia)

Goalie: Matt Russell (Navy), Kip Turner (Virginia)

Honorable Mention

Attack: D.J. Andzejewski (Penn), Nick Bonacci (Dartmouth), Brendan Cannon (Georgetown), Greg Cohen (Harvard), Michael Farley (Providence), Mike Leveille (Syracuse), David Mitchell (Cornell), Xander Ritz (Maryland), Peter Trombino (Princeton), John Walker (Army)

Midfield: Oliver Bacon (Towson), Jake Deane (Massachusetts), Greg Downing (Fairfield), Brendan Healy (Maryland), Patrick Heim (Penn State), Terry Kimener (UMBC), Mark Kovler (Princeton), Steve Looney (Navy), John Orsen (Hofstra), Steve Panarelli (Syracuse), Dave Paolisso (Georgetown), Patrick Perritt (Syracuse), Alex Smith (Delaware), Andrew Spack (Loyola)

Defense: Mitch Belisle (Cornell), Andrew Blechman (Penn), Jordan DiNola (Navy), Colin Hulme (Colgate), Jerry Lambe (Georgetown), Matt Luyster (Army), Sean McCarthy (Hofstra), Matt Pinto (Johns Hopkins)

Goalie: Drew Adams (Penn State), Harry Alford (Maryland), Greg Havalchak (Rutgers), Joey Kemp (Notre Dame), Jesse Schwartzman (Johns Hopkins)

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