With the Major League Lacrosse season set to begin, the ‘Zards are the team to beat. The 2018 New York Lizards roster is stacked with some of the sport’s biggest names. From Drew Adams between the pipes to Rob Pannell on the attack, 2018 could be the year the Lizards hoist another championship cup.
A Closer Look at the New York Lizards Roster
Drew Adams #14
Goaltender Drew Adams is now in his ninth year in MLL. He has been the team’s starting goalie since 2012. In that time, Adams has received many individual honors, including Goalie of the Year in 2011, 2012 and 2015.
- He has been selected to the MLL All-Star Game five times.
- Adams is also a member of Team USA.
Adams played collegiate ball at Penn State University, where he was named to the All-American team three times. Off-the-field, Adams founded Net Nation Lacrosse, which offers position-specific lacrosse camps and clinics throughout the country.
Steve DeNapoli #70
Midfielder Steve DeNapoli is now in his eighth season in the league. The Hofstra University graduate has twice been a MLL All-Star. Over 82 regular season games, DeNapoli has scored 32 goals and tallied 23 assists. He was a member of the 2015 New York Lizards MLL Championship team.
The Hewlett, NY native was a four-year letterman at Hofstra, a two-time all-conference selection and a two-year captain.
DeNapoli is also entering his second season as an assistant coach for the Adelphi University men’s lacrosse team.
Joe Fletcher #17
Defenseman Joe Fletcher is entering his fifth season in black and green. He has played in nearly every game since joining the Lizards in 2014. In that time, Fletcher has been selected to play in three MLL All-Star games and was named the Defensive Player of the Year in 2015.
At Loyola College, he was a two-time first-team All-American and a Tewaarton Trophy Finalist. He also helped lead his team to the 2012 NCAA Championship in his senior year. He was the only collegiate selected to play for Team USA in 2014. He will also join Team USA in 2018 at the FIL World Championships.
Kyle Hartzell #81
Defenseman Kyle Hartzell is entering his fifth season on the New York Lizards roster. In his time in the league, he has won many honors, including:
- MLL 1st Team All-Pro Defensemen
- Four-time MLL All-Star
- Two-time MLL Champion
- Two-time Fastest Shot winner
- MLL Championship Weekend MVP
At Salisbury State University, Hartzell led his team to a 2007 national championship with a 23-0 record. He is another one of this year’s ‘Zards who will play on Team USA.
Will Manny #4
Attackman Will Manny was acquired in a trade with the Boston Cannons in the middle of last season. He immediately made an impact, contributing 17 goals, one assist and five ground balls in six regular season games.
The three-time MLL All-Star grew up in Massapequa, Long Island, where he attended St. Anthony’s High School. Manny is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he was twice in the running to be named the best lacrosse player in the country.
He is currently an assistant lacrosse coach for the Utah University men’s lacrosse team.
Rob Pannell #3
Attackman Rob Pannell is one of the most accomplished players in Major League Lacrosse today.
His honors include:
- 2016 MLL Offensive Player of the Year
- Three-time MLL All-Pro
- Five-time MLL All-Star
- 2013 MLL Rookie of the Year
Pannell, who grew up in Smithtown, Long Island, broke the MLL single-season scoring record in 2016 with 74 points. He graduated from Cornell University as the all-time leader in NCAA career points.
He was selected to play on Team USA in 2014 and 2018.
Paul Rabil #99
He has won titles and most valuable player honors at every level of lacrosse competition, including the 2015 MLL Championship Game MVP. Born and raised in Maryland, Rabil is a graduate of Johns Hopkins University.
In his spare time, he devotes his efforts to building the Paul Rabil Foundation, which is committed to helping children with learning differences.
Joe Walters #1
Midfielder Joe Walters is another recent arrival to the New York Lizards roster, who immediately made his presence known on the field. He scored 23 goals and racked-up 18 assists last season.
Walters’ lacrosse career is full of accolades, wins and championships, including:
- High School All-American
- Four-time collegiate All-American
- Jack Turnbull Award Winner for the Nation’s Best Attackman
- Seven-time MLL All-Star
- Two-time MLL Champion
The Rochester, New York native is a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park.
These eight players are just a small selection of the ‘Zards that will take the field on April 21 against the Denver Outlaws. You can see a guide to the rest of the squad here.