Bryant Lacrosse Welcomes 21 Newcomers for 2010-2011

SMITHFIELD, R.I. Bryant University head coach Mike Pressler is pleased to announce the addition of 21 student-athletes to the 2011 Bulldog men's lacrosse team. And in the program's first season of full Division I membership, the Class of 2014 and three incoming transfers will look to contribute immediately with a spot in the conference and national playoffs on the line.

Two fifth-year seniors and a junior college transfer compliment the 18-member freshman class, a group that adds depth and athleticism to a team that finished an impressive 12-5 against some of Division I's toughest competition a season ago.

"The goal for this recruiting class was to add depth to the team, especially in the offensive half," said Pressler, who enters his fifth year at Bryant in 2010-11, "with the byproduct then being immediate competition among those positions. And after just eight fall practices and two short weeks to evaluate our newcomers, we really feel like that goal will be accomplished by the time spring practice begins."

Fifth-year senior transfers Trever Sipperly (Greenwich, N.Y.) and Ryan Morrell (Glen Mills, Pa.) headline the 21 first-year Bulldogs, as the duo enrolls in Bryant's MBA graduate program after completing undergraduate careers at Notre Dame and Princeton, respectively.

"When fifth-year players join your team, those guys with their experience and knowledge of the game are going to be immediate impact players," said Pressler. "And ours come from two of the most prestigious and successful programs in the country in Notre Dame and Princeton.

"Trever Sipperly was one of the best faceoff guys in the country a year ago and was a huge part of Notre Dame's run to the national championship game," he continued. "Ryan Morrell was a highly touted player out of high school who has been a bit snakebitten by injury over his career. But when he was healthy, he was certainly a marquee player for the Tigers and we expect him to be the same here."

The pair is joined on the list of transfers by James Kiernan (Greenwich, Conn.), who joins the Bulldogs after two successful seasons at Nassau Community College. Kiernan will also be looked upon to fill in holes quickly this fall and into the spring season.

"Kieran was a very accomplished player out of Greenwich (Conn.) High School, and after two solid years at Nassau Community College, he will fill an immediate need for us adding a lefty out of the midfield," said Pressler. "He is certainly one of the best athletes on our team and has outstanding breakaway speed. We are really excited and thrilled with our three transfers."

Sipperly, the top faceoff specialist for the NCAA national championship finalist University of Notre Dame last season, will also experience something altogether new with the Bulldogs in 2011. He will get to play side-by-side with younger brother Dan, who joins the Black and Gold as a freshman. The pair marks the fourth sibling combination on the 2011 squad.

The trio of transfers compliments a midfield-heavy Class of 2014 which includes 18 players at all four major positions. The 21 newcomers feature in their ranks the addition of three attackers, 14 midfielders, a pair of defensemen and two rookie goalies. Each will challenge for a spot in the lineup and look to fill in holes left by the graduation of a strong 2010 senior class, a group that included the nation's top faceoff specialist and MLL draftee Andrew Hennessey and All-American defenseman Matt Murnane.

"In the midfield and at attack, those two positions are now more wide open than ever due to the ability and athleticism of our newcomers," Pressler said. "The other hole we needed to fill immediately was at the faceoff X, finding someone to step into the role played last year by Andrew Hennessey, who is one of the best faceoff specialists I have ever seen or coached. We've added three freshmen and [Trever] Sipperly to a mix that already includes returner Evan Roberts to fill the void of old No. 40."

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