In his first year back in the MLL after playing on the LXM Pro Tour, Kyle Harrison exploded back into MLL with the same intensity he is known for. After being acquired in the player pool this past year, Harrison stepped onto the field for the Machine and shined, earning him the teams 2014 MVP Award.
“Kyle was the type of player that cared about his team, his fans and his ability to keep growing his game,” Machine Vice President & Head Coach Bear Davis said. “He is a great role model on and off the field and he encompasses what we want our guys to be like. In my opinion, MVP stands for Most Valuable Person and I think Kyle fits this perfectly.”
In his first year with the Machine, Harrison had a flair for the dramatic and coming up big when it mattered most. In the team’s first game, Harrison netted the season’s first goal on the Machine’s first offensive possession. Later in the year, with the team’s playoff hope on the line, Harrison capped off the highest scoring game of the season when he sunk the game-winning goal in overtime to give the Machine a 23-22 victory over the Denver Outlaws.
Harrison is no stranger to MLL as he had played in the league from 2005-09. While away from MLL, Harrison helped create the LXM Pro Tour, so he was never actually away from lacrosse. When MLL and the LXM Pro Tour announced a partnership, the time was right for Harrison to make a return to the league he once called home.
“There were a lot of moving parts that lead to the decision to come back to MLL, but it was the plan to return at some point from the second I left back in 2009,” Harrison said. “With STX partnering with the league, then Adrenaline partnering with the league, it was a perfect opportunity to get back into MLL. I enjoyed my time in the league prior to leaving to start the LXM Tour, and couldn’t be happier to be back.”
Contributing immediately to the Machine offense, Harrison had four points, three goals and one assist, in the team’s first game of the season against the Charlotte Hounds. From then on, the rest was history, as Harrison had a point in every game this season, his most successful season in the league.
Finishing his first year back with 33 points on 27 goals and six assists, Harrison fell fourth on the team in total points. For Harrison, 2014 marked his personal highs for games played, goals and points in a season.
In 2005, Harrison was drafted first overall by the New Jersey Pride. In this same season he was chosen as an All-Star, an accomplishment that he has achieved three times in his seven years with the MLL.
A year later he was chosen to play for Team USA in the world games and this past year, Harrison was again chosen again to play for Team USA in Denver, Colorado where he helped lead the team to the championship game, before falling to Team Canada in the goal medal game.
“As a kid, no matter what sport you play, the dream is to wear a jersey with Red, White and Blue on it, with the three letters USA across the chest,” Harrison said. “So, to be able to play on the US National Team twice in my professional career has been a dream come true.”
Alongside teammates Greg Bice, Brian Phipps and Steele Stanwick, Harrison was named a team captain for the Machine this past season, an incredible feat for his first year back and his first year with the team.
Before playing professional lacrosse, Harrison was a standout player at Johns Hopkins University. In 2005, he won the prestigious Tewaaraton Award and was a three time All-American selection. He helped lead the winning Johns Hopkins team to the 2005 National Championship, was the 2005 Player of the Year and was a two-time NCAA Midfielder of the Year.
Looking ahead to the 2015 season, Harrison was named to the Machine’s 23-man protected roster and leads an experienced group back to Ohio. Harrison helped power the Machine to the league’s top offense in 2014 and the team is locked and loaded for 2015.
2014 Ohio Machine Team Awards
Breakout Player of the Year:
Defensive Player of the Year:
Offensive Player of the Year:
Oil Can Award:
Team MVP: Kyle Harrison