Five Blue Jays nab All-American honors

May 23, 2013 | WNST Staff

BALTIMORE, MD – Johns Hopkins senior defenseman Tucker Durkin was named a First Team USILA All-American on Thursday and four other Blue Jays were named to the team as well. Joining Durkin were senior faceoff specialist Mike Poppleton, who grabbed second team honors, and senior goalie Pierce Bassett, senior defenseman Chris Lightner and sophomore attackman Wells Stanwick, who all earned honorable mention status.

Durkin earned his third straight All-America honor as he nabbed second team honors as a sophomore and first team honors last season, when he was also named the William C. Schmeisser Award recipient as the nation’s top defensive player. This season he led a Johns Hopkins unit that ranks third nationally in scoring defense (7.79). Durkin led the team in caused turnovers (16) and finished fifth in ground balls (32) while regularly drawing the assignment of marking the opposition’s top attackman. While matchups can change throughout a game, the three attackmen he primarily marked in his final three games combined for a total of just two assists in that time.

Durkin is the first Johns Hopkins defenseman since Michael Evans (2007-09) to earn All-America honors three times, the first since Rob Doerr (1998-99) to earn First Team All-America honors in back-to-back seasons and the first to earn first and second team honors a combined three times since Dave Pietramala grabbed first team honors from 1987-89.

Poppleton is making his first appearance on the All-America team with his second team selection. He won 161-of-235 (.685) faceoffs this season and grabbed a team-high 89 ground balls. He ranks second in the nation in faceoff winning percentage and 15th in ground balls per game (6.85). His .685 winning percentage is a Johns Hopkins single-season record, while his 161 faceoffs won are the eighth-highest single-season total in JHU history. He finishes his career having won 351-of-545 (.644) faceoffs and is the school record-holder in career faceoff winning percentage.

Bassett is also making his third appearance on the All-America team after earning second team honors as a sophomore and honorable mention status last season. He posted a 7.59 goals against average and a .604 save percentage this season and currently ranks fourth in the nation in GAA and third in save percentage. His .604 save percentage is the best at Johns Hopkins and the first above 60% since 2005, when Jesse Schwartzman posted a .626 mark. He is the first Johns Hopkins goalie to earn All-America honors three times since Brian Carcaterra turned the trick from 1998-2000.

Lightner is making his first appearance on the team as well after enjoying a strong final season at Homewood. He teamed with Durkin to give the Blue Jays one of the most experienced and effective defensive tandems in the nation. Lightner started all 13 games he played in this season and had a career-high 36 ground balls and nine caused turnovers. His 36 ground balls ranked third on the team, while he was fourth in caused turnovers.

Stanwick took over as the leader of the Blue Jay offense and led the team in scoring with 24 goals and 23 assists for 47 points. He had 11 multi-point games to his credit and had seven games with four points or more on the year. Stanwick is the first sophomore attackman at Johns Hopkins to earn All-America honors since Kyle Wharton in 2009 and he currently ranks fourth in the nation in shooting percentage (.500).

 

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