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Syracuse Lacrosse: Midseason All-Americans

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Inside Lacrosse released its list of midseason All-Americans which featured five Syracuse Orange players. The ACC took 13 of the 30 first and second team spots including placing seven players on the first team.

Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier this week, Inside Lacrosse released its mid-season All-Americans list. Keep in mind that this is just the IL staffs' opinion.

Only one Syracuse Orange player made the first team, close defender Brandon Mullins. The redshirt junior has nine groundballs and 12 caused turnovers this year through nine games. He is a legit lockdown defender and has taken on some of the nation's best attackmen. A Texas native, Mullins can lay out huge hits and was named a 2015 first team pre-season All-American. He currently ranks fifth in career caused turnovers at Syracuse with 43, one away from tying John Lade for fourth.

The second team features four SU players. Two of Syracuse's three attackmen made the second team including senior Kevin Rice. Rice has 19 goals and 26 points, and is one of the best feeders in college lacrosse. He has three, seven-point performances this year against UVA, Duke, and Albany. Rice should enter the 200-point club by the end of the year, sitting just 17 points away. Last year Rice finished with 44 assists, good enough for ninth all-time in a season at Syracuse. He currently leads all Syracuse players in assists and points and nationally sits third in assists per game and seventh in points per game.

Fellow attackman Dylan Donahue also makes an appearance on the second team. Donahue has 30 goals and 13 assists on the year including ten man-up and two game winning goals. It is great to know that Donahue still has one more year at Syracuse. Donahue is first in man-up goals in the country, 11th in points and fourth in goals per game.

Long-stick midfielder Peter Macartney made the second team behind first teamer Larken Kemp of Brown. MaCartney has 108 groundballs in his four years and is great on the wing in faceoff situations, being one of the main reasons SU won as many faceoffs as it did in 2014. He has three caused turnovers this year and 14 in his career. MaCartney is a great asset as a defender, just look at the Duke game.

Of course Ben Williams makes the list on the second team. Williams came to Syracuse after spending a year at Holy Cross. Coming out of the state of Minnesota, he was barely recruited. He chose between Syracuse and Cornell when he decided to transfer, you have to think that the fact that Cornell already has a stud faceoff guy in Domenic Massimilian pushed Williams to Syracuse where he could be the go-to guy. Quite frankly, this season could have gone a completely different direction without such domination at the faceoff X, it is comforting to know that he will have two more years with the Orange. Williams is 147-210 at the X this year with three goals and an assist, but has turned the ball over seven times. He is a bit of a liability with the ball off the faceoff, but Williams is so quick on the clamp and is great boxing out his opponent. Several times this year, opponents have chosen to basically concede the faceoff, play defense and force Syracuse to pass the ball into its defensive zone. Against Albany this week he won 24 of 27 which is the sixth most faceoff wins in a game for a Syracuse player ever. He is currently second in Syracuse history in faceoff winning percentage in a season with a .700 winning percentage. Oh and he has 96 groundballs this season, fourth in Syracuse history for groundballs in a season and has two performances that make the top ten in Syracuse history for groundballs in a game this year (vs. Army 13 GBs, vs. Albany 15 GBs). In the nation, Williams is first in groundballs per game and second in faceoff winning percentage.

With Rice and Donahue making the second team, you may be wondering which attackmen made the first team: Lyle Thompson (Albany Great Danes), Dylan Molloy (Brown Bears), Matt Kavanagh (Notre Dame Fighting Irish), Jimmy Bitter (North Carolina Tar Heels). According to Inside Lacrosse, during the four seasons prior to 2014 78.7% of the first team midseason All-Americans finish as a first or second team USILA All-American but just 36% of the second team midseason All-Americans finish on either the first or second team USILA All-Americans. Last year, not one Syracuse player made the first or second team midseason All-American list, but Kevin Rice and Brandon Mullins both were named USILA second team All-Americans at the end of the 2014 season. I have to think that Rice, Donahue, Mullins, and Williams are all locks to make the first or second team USILA All-Americans list at the end of the year.

Here is the breakdown in the ACC and by conference:

First Team

Second Team

Total

Duke

2 - Deemer Class (M), Myles Jones (M)

0

2

North Carolina

1 - Jimmy Bitter (A)

0

1

Notre Dame

2 - Matt Landis (D), Matt Kavanagh (A)

1 - Shane Doss (G)

3

Syracuse

1 - Brandon Mullins (D)

4 - Kevin Rice (A), Dylan Donahue (A), Ben Williams (FO), Peter MaCartney (LSM)

5

Virginia

1 - Ryan Tucker (M)

1 - Greg Coholan (M)

2

First Team

Second Team

Total

America East

1 - Albany

0

1

Atlantic Coast

7

6

13

Big East

1 - Denver

1 - Denver

2

Big Ten

2 - Maryland

2 - Maryland, Ohio State

4

Colonial

0

2 - Towson, Drexel

2

Ivy

3 - Brown (2), Cornell (1)

3 - Princeton (2), Cornell (1)

6

Metro Atlantic

0

0

0

Northeast

0

0

0

Patriot

1 - Army

1 - Navy

2

Southern

0

0

0

Independent

0

0

0

The Orange will visit the North Carolina Tar Heels on Saturday at 4:00 pm. The game can be seen on ESPNU and heard on WTKW 99.5 FM. Of course you can also follow me @Orangelax for updates throughout the game.