Via Major League Lacrosse

Former University of Virginia standout and Baltimore Bayhawks attackman Matt Ward has been honored as the 2006 Cascade MLL Rookie of the Year. The award was based on votes submitted by the General Manager and the Head Coach of each of the 10 Major League Lacrosse teams. Ward, along with other MLL honorees, will be acknowledged at the Awards Luncheon on Saturday, August 26th during New Balance Championship Weekend.

Ward selected fourth overall in the May 31st Collegiate Draft by the Bayhawks. He put together one of the most impressive offensive performances of any first year player this season. In his first ever game, Ward posted two goals including a two-pointer against New Jersey on June 11th. His shooting touch didn‚??t leave him for the rest of the season, as he went on to score hat-tricks in three more games. He scored a goal in every game he played and never finished a game without scoring multiple points.

His most impressive performance came against the Boston Cannons on July 8th, when he scored six goals and added three assists for nine points. His offensive explosion earned him the Major League Lacrosse Offensive Player of the Week award, as he became the only rookie this season to win the award. He also earned the Cascade Rookie of the Week for Week Five when he scored three goals and two assists against the Rochester Rattlers. Despite being just a rookie, Ward was the Bayhawks‚?? second leading scorer with 33 points, and second on team in goals scored with 23.

Success is nothing new to the Oakton, VA. native who led Virginia to an undefeated 17-0 season in which the Cavaliers captured the NCAA National Championship. Ward was given college lacrosse‚??s highest honor when he was given the 2006 Tewaaraton Award. He broke the record for most goals in a post-season with 16, and was named the Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Championships as well First Team All-American.

Ward joins former Bayhawk and current Rattler Brodie Merrill, the Barrage‚??s Ryan Boyle, former Rattler and current member of the Pride, Adam Doneger, Boston‚??s Conor Gill and former member of the Barrage and current Lizard, Keith Cromwell as Cascade Rookie of the Year.