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Wednesday, May 19, 2010


NESCAC leading scorer and Player of the Year D.J. Hessler

MEDFORD -- The New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) champion Tufts University men's lacrosse team earned five honors when the 2010 All-Conference Teams were announced on Tuesday. Junior D.J. Hessler (Monkton, MD) was chosen as Player of the Year to top the list.

Hessler, junior midfielder Matt Witko (Chappaqua, NY), junior long-stick midfielder Alec Bialosky (Moreland Hills, OH), and senior defenseman Eytan Saperstein (Hewlett, NY) all earned All-NESCAC First Team accolades. The four First Team selections for Tufts were twice as many as any other NESCAC team.

Heading into Tufts' NCAA Quarterfinal game against Middlebury today, Hessler leads NESCAC in scoring with 78 points (32 goals, 46 assists), 19 points more than anyone else in the league. His 46 assists - which are one shy of his own school record set last year - are also 19 more than the second-place playmaker in NESCAC. In nine regular-season conference games, Hessler tallied 15 goals with 14 assists for 29 points. Behind his lead, Tufts is the top scoring team in the conference with 238 goals, 61 more than Middlebury's second-place scoring total. This is the third season that Hessler has earned an All-NESCAC award, including a First Team honor in 2009 and a Second Team nod in 2008.

Saperstein is also on the All-NESCAC First Team for the second straight year. The leader of the squad defensively, Saperstein's 80 ground balls (4.4 per game) are the most among non-face-off men in the league. He had a season-high 10 ground balls in a win over Trinity on April 10 and scored his only goal of the season during a tight 14-13 victory against Bowdoin on April 30. Tufts leads the league in ground balls with 710 in 18 games, an average of 39.44 per contest.

Witko earned his first All-NESCAC award this season after emerging as one of the biggest goal-scoring threat at midfield in the league. He's currently tied for fourth in the conference with 34 goals, including a team-high 18 in the nine regular-season conference tilts. He scored four goals, including the game-winner with 5:58 remaining in the fourth quarter to decide a 10-9 win over Williams on March 27.

Bialosky took over as the Tufts starter at long-stick middie for Jordan Yarboro, a three-time All-NESCAC choice. His performance allowed the Jumbos to not miss a beat at the position. In addition to his 58 ground balls (3.2 per game), Bialosky scored seven goals with five assists for 12 points. The first-time All-NESCAC choice had two goals and an assist in a 10-5 regular-season win over Middlebury on April 24. He had six ground balls during a league win at Wesleyan on April 3.

The Jumbos won their first NESCAC championship this spring, defeating Middlebury 13-12 in the final.

2010 NESCAC Men's Lacrosse All-Conference Teams