7/19/2019 2:00:00 PM / Chris Ryndak
The National Lacrosse League today announced the First and Second All-Pro Teams as well as the All-Rookie Team for the 2018-19 season.
Bandits goaltender Matt Vinc was named to the First All-Pro Team while captain Steve Priolo was named a Second-Team All-Pro as a defenseman. Transition player Ian MacKay earned All-Rookie honors.
Vinc earned the NLL’s Goaltender of the Year award on Thursday and was a finalist for Most Valuable Player. He previously won Goaltender of the Year in 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2018.
Vinc finished the 2018-19 season leading the league in goals-against average (10.02) and ranked second in save percentage (.803). His 14-4 record this season topped the NLL, with his 14 wins setting both a new career high for him and Bandits’ franchise record for wins by a goaltender a single season.
He amassed 705 saves this season, which ranks second in franchise history and fifth in league history. He started all 18 regular-season games for the Bandits en route to setting new all-time league record for career saves (7,823) and minutes (11,996) by a goaltender.
Priolo is a six-time finalist for Defenseman of the Year and was nominated again this year.
He scored double-digit goals for the first time in his career, finishing the regular season with 11 tallies, which ranked second among all NLL defensemen. Priolo tied his career high in points with 26 (11+15) and at 37.9 percent, he logged the fifth-best shooting percentage in the NLL.
In the playoffs, among defensemen, he tied for first in goals (2) and led all defensemen in assists (8) and points (10) while ranking second overall in the league in loose balls recovered (37)
A stalwart on the penalty kill, he helped the Bandits special teams unit to a first-place finish with a 61.3 percent success rate.
He also led a Bandits’ defensive corps that allowed the fewest goals against of any team in the NLL (186), which marked the fewest the team had allowed since the NLL expanded its regular season to 18 games, and the fewest overall for the franchise since 2011, when they allowed 159 goals.
Bandits Play-By-Play Announcer John Gurtler on Priolo:
“He is the glue that keeps this team together and is a true leader. He can't wait to get to the rink, be it practice, team meeting or game day. His enthusiasm and love for the game and his players is contagious. He reads and reacts to the game, which is why he is, in my opinion, the league’s best defenseman.”
Bandits forward Chris Cloutier on Priolo:
“I don’t know how who else on the team I would name captain. The way he talks, he’s just so knowledgeable and he knows the right thing to say, whether it’s in huddles or individually.
“When we’re doing running drills in practice, he’s pushing everyone. When we’re in a huddle, he’s the one giving a speech to get everyone fired up. He does everything right and if you do something right, he’s the first one to come over to the bench and tap you on the head or give you encouragement. Pri is your ideal captain.”
Bandits forward Corey Small on Priolo:
“He’s a great leader. He’s a perfect mix of having fun and keeping it light, but also being dialed in and staying focused come game time. He demands a lot of respect and holds guys accountable to play a level of lacrosse that’s going to make us a competitor every single weekend.
“He had such an incredible year not just on defense, but in transition as well. He had to have been one of the top scorers in transition this year. He can play shutdown defense, he can score in transition, but he also adds some toughness to the game. He has three different facets to his games that are pretty unmatchable.
“For the culture of the team, he’s got a 'win now' and 'win first' mentality. He’s a guy that takes it very seriously and he keeps everyone in line. But at the same time, he’s a fun-loving guy and he’s a great guy to be around.”
MacKay has been named to the NLL’s 2018-19 All-Rookie Team after being a finalist for Rookie of the Year.
The fourth-overall pick in the 2018 NLL Entry Draft, MacKay played in all 18 games during his rookie season, recording 32 points (11+21) and recovering 88 loose balls.
His 32 points rank ninth in franchise history in rookie scoring and his 21 assists tie him for sixth with Anthony Malcom on the team’s all-time rookie list.
Among rookies this past season, he finished sixth in scoring, fourth in loose ball recoveries, tied for fourth in caused turnovers and fourth in faceoffs won.
He also scored one shorthanded goal and was named the NLL Rookie of the Week for Week 7.
Gurtler on MacKay:
“He came to camp wide-eyed but full of confidence. He adjusted to the game from the opening faceoff and continued throughout the season, only getting better and better every game. A youngblood of this team, MacKay is the real McCoy.”
Cloutier on MacKay:
“I’ve played with Ian for a long time now. I went to the Hill Academy [in Vaughan, Ontario] with him. He’s a true all-around player, which you don’t see very much of anymore. He’s awesome at what he does. He can do anything you need, from faceoffs to defense to offense, and that’s crazy to think.
“Even when we were at school, he was an offensive player one year, then he played long pole for Team Canada and was taking faceoffs with the long pole. It’s not just box lacrosse, he’s really good at doing whatever’s asked of him. He’s got a really bright future coming up in the NLL.”
Small on MacKay:
“His maturity as a rookie was impressive. It was his first year in the league, but he doesn’t conduct himself in that manner. In the locker room, you’d think he was a guy that has been in the league for three or four years. He has that personality, the way he interacts with everybody.
“Obviously his skill level is really high – that’s why he’s being recognized – but there’s usually a gap coming from junior to the NLL and it didn’t seem like there was any gap in his game. He was ready to play right away.”
• • •
2018-19 NLL First Team All-Pro
Dane Dobbie – Calgary Roughnecks – Forward
Lyle Thompson – Georgia Swarm – Forward
Challen Rogers – Toronto Rock – Transition
Graeme Hossack – Rochester Knighthawks – Defense
Kyle Rubsich – Saskatchewan Rush – Defense
Matt Vinc – Buffalo Bandits – Goaltender
2018-19 NLL Second Team All-Pro
Eli McLaughlin – Colorado Mammoth – Forward
Callum Crawford – New England Black Wolves – Forward
Zach Currier – Calgary Roughnecks – Transition
Steve Priolo – Buffalo Bandits – Defense
Brodie Merrill – San Diego Seals – Defense
Christian Del Bianco – Calgary Roughnecks – Goaltender
2018-19 NLL All-Rookie Team
Austin Staats – San Diego Seals – Forward
Ian MacKay – Buffalo Bandits – Transition
Matt Rambo – Philadelphia Wings – Forward
Kyle Killen – Colorado Mammoth – Forward
Trevor Baptiste – Philadelphia Wings – Transition
Brendan Bomberry – Georgia Swarm – Transition