Entering year two under head coach Brian Anken, the Keydets are looking to defend their NCAA team ground ball championship, and also make noise in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference in the 2012 season. In Anken’s first season on Post, the Keydets had a laundry list of individual accomplishments, highlighted by junior face-off specialist Stephen Robarge, who not only led the conference in ground balls per game (10.15 per contest) and faceoff percentage (67 percent) and were also the top marks in the NCAA. He was only the second player in NCAA history to lead the nation in both categories. The 10.15 ground balls per contest ranks No. 8 in NCAA history and is the highest ground ball per game average in Division I lacrosse since 2006, when Denver’s Geoff Snider averaged 11.41 grounders per contest.
Robarge and classmate Chris Rossie were the lone duo to be ranked in the top-25 of the ground ball rankings, as Rossie was third in the MAAC and No. 25 nationally with 4.92 ground balls per contest, making VMI the only school in the country that has a pair of players in the top-25 in the individual rankings. The VMI attack unit of juniors Drew Leonard, Keith Long, and freshman Mickey Hofmeister combined to collect 67 ground balls. Sophomore defensive midfielder Will Baker had 29 pickups and junior goalie Kelly McMinn had 28 ground balls to rank third and fourth on the squad, respectively.
Junior Drew Leonard, the leading Keydet goal scorer this season, ranked in the top-15 nationally in a pair of categories. The Laurel, Md. native was No. 11 in the country in goal per game, averaging 2.38 a contest, and was No. 13 in shot percentage, scoring on 43.1 percent of his shots on cage.