8/2/12 9:24 AM
On Friday, July 13th, the Ohio Machine were hanging on to a 12-11 lead over the Hamilton Nationals in the fourth quarter when rookie attackman Steele Stanwick (2nd Overall Pick) scored his second goal of the game to put the Machine up two with 10 minutes to go in the fourth quarter. The goal not only secured the Machine’s second win of the season but illustrated the potential of the Machine’s highly touted rookie class.
The Machine’s 2012 rookie class consists of nine draftees and two players who were picked up through trades. The class includes 2011 Tewaraaton Award winner and four 2012 Tewaraaton Award Semi-Finalists. All of the rookies hail from NCAA Division 1 programs: three from the ACC, two from the ECAC, one from the CAA, Patriot League, Big East, Ivy League, NEC and one from an Independent program.
The rookies’ strong collegiate pedigrees have helped them make immediate impacts for the Machine. Over the last seven games, Machine rookies have scored 21 goals and 20 assists, which has accounted for 32% of the team’s points over that span, which is second in the league behind the Long Island Lizards.
The team’s most impressive rookie so far has been Stanwick. Since coming into the league, Stanwick has recorded eight goals and 15 assists for a total of 23 points. Stanwick’s 23 points rank him fourth on the team in points and second in the league among all rookies. Stanwick has also built an impressive case for the league’s Rookie of the Year Award, leading all rookies in assists and points per game at 3.28.
Stanwick has now recorded a point in each game, including a six-point (1G, 5A) effort against the Denver Outlaws on July 4th.
Also having an impressive season is Ohio native and midfielder Marshall Burkhart (50th Overall Pick). Burkhart has played in five games and has logged significant minutes as a defensive midfielder. In those five games Burkhart has played in, the defense has allowed 3.5 fewer goals a game. Burkhart has also contributed on the offensive end netting two assists.
Along with a solid collegiate draft, the Machine also bolstered its rookie class by acquiring two additional rookies during the season. On June 13th, the team picked up midfielder Kiel Matisz from the Hamilton Nationals. Matisz played collegiately at Robert Morris and was drafted 55th overall by the Nationals. Matisz has played in six games for Ohio, totaling eight goals and one assist, including his first career hat-trick against the Denver Outlaws.
Despite only being a member of the Machine for two games, attackman Joe Cummings has contributed to the team after being acquired from the Chesapeake Bayhawks at the trade deadline. The Machine traded its second round pick in the 2013 Collegiate Draft and its third round collegiate pick in the 2014 Collegiate Draft for Cummings and a third round pick in the 2012 Collegiate Draft. Cummings was selected 17th overall out of the University of Maryland where he played with fellow Machine players Max Schmidt and Dan Groot. Cummings made his MLL debut against the Hamilton Nationals, where he recorded his first career MLL goal and assist. A week later against his former team, the Chesapeake Bayhawks, Cummings registered his first career hat-trick.
Other rookies who have played in games for Ohio are midfielders Anthony Biscardi (16th Overall Pick), Billy Eisenreich (21st Overall Pick) and Bobby Eilers (34th Overall Pick).
Biscardi has played in only one game for the Machine but picked up two ground balls. Eisenreich, who has seen time at attack and midfield, has played in three games and got on the scoreboard against the Rochester Rattlers when he recorded his first MLL goal and assist on July 28th. In his brief MLL career Eisenriech has already seen time at attack and midfield. Midfielder Bobby Eilers has also seen time at several positions. In five games Eilers has been a midfielder, defensive midfielder and a long stick defenseman.
Three members of Ohio’s rookie class have not seen the field so far this season. Attackmen Alex Demopolous (24th Overall Pick) and Austin Bright (58th Overall Pick) are on the Collegiate Inactive List, and midfielder Chris Langton (42nd Overall Pick) elected not to play this season.
The 11th member of the team’s rookie class is midfielder Rob Rotanz. Rotanz played in two games for the Machine but prior to the All-Star break, the Machine traded the midfielder and its fourth round pick in the 2013 Collegiate Draft to the Rochester Rattlers for two second round picks in the 2013 Collegiate Draft.
For tickets to watch the Machine’s impressive rookie class in their final home game on August 11th during Fan Appreciation Night, call (614) 754-1973 or visit www.theohiomachine.com/tickets. The game includes several phenomenal promotions including $1 Bratwurst, post-game fireworks presented by Bud Light and 19 lucky fans will also be able to win game-worn jerseys right from the players after the game.